This afternoon (Thursday 12th) in the Scottish Parliament there was a Members’ Debate initiated by Colin Smyth MSP on the recent Marie Curie report ‘Enough for everyone – Challenging inequities in palliative care,’ The debate was an honest exchange and at times a very emotional and personal debate of views about palliative care across Scotland.
The research from Marie Curie focused on some of the barriers certain groups face in accessing palliative care. It highlights that 11,000 people who need palliative care in Scotland each year are not accessing it, meaning that one in four people who die in Scotland miss out on the palliative care they need. In particular it mentions that many over 85s are disproportionately less likely to access palliative care support, that for them there is often considerable under identification of their needs and in particular challenges for those living with frailty.
The research currently underway here at Scottish Care focuses on the role of social care staff in care homes and in the wider community who every day are engaged in palliative and end of life care. Their story will be told in a report to be launched in February but the debate in Parliament highlights the continued ways in which social care palliative support is often marginalised. The training and learning needs of social care staff are in need of significant attention if we are to achieve the aims of the Scottish Government’s Strategic Framework for Action on Palliative and End of Life Care.
The debate can be watched at http://www.scottishparliament.tv/Archive/Index/ffa1ae6c-c3f1-448d-9cd4-fdeb44010cf4?categoryId=7c73db9f-2429-48aa-a999-bb851e6304ac&parentCategoryClicked=False&pageNumber=1&orderByField=ScheduledStart&queryOrder=DESC