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Aging Ment Health. 2014 May;18(4):400-10. doi: 10.1080/13607863.2013.843157. Epub 2013 Oct 17.

Quality palliative care for cancer and dementia in five European countries: some common challenges.

Author information

1
a Research Department of Primary Care and Population Health , University College London , London , UK.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

There is a growing consensus worldwide that palliative care needs to be both more inclusive of conditions other than cancer and to improve. This paper explores some common challenges currently faced by professionals providing palliative care for patients with either cancer or dementia across five countries.

METHOD:

One focus group (n=7) and 67 interviews were conducted in 2012 across five countries: England, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Norway, with professionals from dementia, cancer and palliative care settings.

RESULTS:

The interviews revealed five common challenges faced across the five countries: communication difficulties (between services; and between professionals, and patients and their families); the variable extent of structural/functional integration of services; the difficulties in funding of palliative care services; problematic processes of care (boundaries, definitions, knowledge, skills and inclusiveness) and, finally, time constraints.

CONCLUSION:

These are not problems distinct to palliative care, but they may have different origins and explanations compared to other areas of health care. This paper explored deeper themes hidden behind a discourse about barriers and facilitators to improving care.

PMID:
24131061
PMCID:
PMC3979441
DOI:
10.1080/13607863.2013.843157
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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