Multimorbidity in Palliative and End of Life Care: Knowledge Exchange Seminar and Interactive Workshop

On Friday 27th April 2018, over 60 delegates attended a collaborative seminary and workshop at the Cicely Saunders Institute, hosted jointly by the National Institute for Health Research Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (NIHR CLAHRC) South London and NIHR CLAHRC East of England.
Multimorbidity (living with multiple health conditions) affects a growing number of people in the UK and globally, and severely reduces the quality of life of patients and those close to them, especially toward the end of life. This seminar and workshop aimed to share the latest knowledge, discuss research priorities, and identify opportunities for multimorbidity research in palliative and end of life care.

The day began with a series of thought-provoking presentations from clinicians and academics working across different care settings, including: Primary Care perspectives; opportunities and challenges in service change; use of routine data to discover the impact of multimorbidity at end of life; and national and international progress in patient centred outcomes.
Delegates praised the range of perspectives across providers and spanning applied, epidemiological and implementation research. They then contributed to a lively debate of research priorities. Among the extensive list of topics, delegates highlighted the need for multimorbidity research: that spans health and social care systems and coordinates care across settings; that draws on specialities like Palliative Care and General Practice that put the person before their disease and deliver holistic care; and that uses existing rich datasets to understand outcomes of routine clinical practice in an efficient manner. The workshop closed with a networking lunch; an opportunity to continue the discussions from throughout the day and view the fantastic graphic recording.

Artist Jody Ford producing a digital record of the day.

Artist Jody Ford producing a digital record of the day.

The event prompted discussions around the strengths of both CLAHRC’s and collaborative opportunities. Complementary skills and interests in primary care, palliative care beyond cancer, evaluation, big data, measurement and trials, and links with mental health could provide national and international leadership in palliative and end of life care. We look forward to publications arising from the work presented, and to joint working so people living with multimorbidity receive timely access to the best possible health and social care.

This event was supported by Cicely Saunders International and the NIHR CLAHRCs in South London and East of England. The views expressed in this news item are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR, or the Department of Health and Social Care.

Written by: Matthew Maddocks PhD MCSP, Senior Lecturer in Health Services Research, NIHR Career Development Fellow



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