NHS should do God new guidance suggests with doctors urged to ask

first_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. old hands  Care for dying people varies widely Credit:Alamy  Care for dying people varies widely  The advice follows an audit of deaths in England which found that the spiritual wishes of patients were recorded in just one in seven cases, where communication was possible.Sam Ahmedzai, emeritus professor of palliative medicine and specialist member of the Nice quality standard committee said: “Control of pain and other distressing symptoms is very important for dying people, but good end of life care goes far beyond that. “Nice wants to put the dying person and those important to them at the heart of decisions. This means asking people what they want and providing what they need, whenever possible.”The Church of England welcomed the stance, saying anxiety about death could be eased considerably if patients felt able to discuss their religious views.The Revd Dr Malcolm Brown, director of mission and public affairs, said: “High quality end of life care is one of the most important ways in which society can show that it values every individual for themselves and not just for their economic usefulness.“We particularly welcome the advice to ask people, as they approach death, about their spiritual and religious concerns.“People’s views and needs can change radically as the inevitability of death approaches and dying can be eased considerably if careful opportunities to express or discuss these matters are created.“For people approaching death who would like to discuss questions of religion and spirituality, or who wish for religious rites to be observed, chaplains in the NHS and in hospices are experienced in providing this dimension of care.“Chaplains, of different religions and beliefs, are also available to support healthcare staff in broaching these questions with dying patients.”center_img Doctors must not be afraid to do God, new NHS advice suggests, as medics are urged to ask the dying about their spiritual and religious preferences.The guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) says hospital staff need to do more to ensure that the individual preferences of patients are addressed, as well as their medical needs.Doctors and nurses will be encouraged to ask patients about their “spiritual, cultural, religious and social preferences,” opening up conversations on matters such as life after death. It is estimated that about half a million people die each year in England and 3 out of 4 of these deaths are anticipated by medical staff.Patients who display symptoms suggesting they may be in the last days of life should be monitored for further changes, the guidance says, to identify if they are nearing death, stabilising or recovering, and help patients and relatives prepare for the prospect of death. Some people can experience difficulty in swallowing during their final days of life.The guidance says necessary changes to prescribed medicine – such as providing injections instead of tablets – should be anticipated so that patients are not left without essential medication. “It includes asking about the dying person’s spiritual, cultural, religious and social preferences. Only by attending to these issues and concerns can we deliver truly individualised care for each person and those important to them.”He said the treatment of the dying was crucial not just to the patient, but to the memories of family and friends. Half of all deaths in England occur in hospital last_img read more

Direct Democracy Ireland appeal for a no vote in Court of Appeal

first_imgONE POLITICAL PARTY is calling for a no vote in the referendum on establishing a Court of Appeal.Direct Democracy Ireland founder, Raymond Whitehead told TheJournal.ie that he will be voting against it, arguing that if this referendum is passed, people won’t have any recourse to the Supreme Court in most cases.“This is a farce,” said Whitehead.Democracy deficitWhen asked if there was enough debate about the establishment of a Court of Appeal he said the Seanad debate was taking up most of debate time, stating: “It is diversionary. We have a democracy deficit in this country. This will be the final nail in the coffin of this country in terms of democracy and the right to justice.”He added: “The government want to speed up the justice system, as there are delays in having appeals heard by the Supreme Court. But it will only speed it up in the interests of government and corporate interests. Sometimes democracy can be slow, but shouldn’t we be looking before we leap. Haven’t we learned from the past. Why are we rushing justice. Look where it got us before, rushing in at 3am in the morning with the bank bailout.”How will it work?He said he didn’t believe the government had given an adequate outline as how the Court of Appeal would clear the backlog of appeal cases that the Supreme Court is experiencing, adding that the government have not specified what their “plan b” is if it doesn’t get passed.“What is their plan then, they haven’t told us, so how can they expect us to vote on something when we don’t know the consequences of voting for or against it,” he said.In their flyer, Direct Democracy state that the long delays in having an appeal to the Supreme Court can be beneficial to mortgage holders in distress as it can delay the repossession process for banks in repossessing homes.Whitehead said he believed the establishment of a Court of Appeal would have unintended consequences and urged people to get informed.If you would like more information about the upcoming referendum on October 4, please visit the Referendum 2013 website here. Read: Here is Alan Shatter’s quick guide to the Court of Appeal referendum>Column: Irish politics won’t change until people demand accountability from leaders>last_img read more