Effective practice in delivering palliative services to people from social and economically deprived backgrounds
Whilst good end of life care is seen as a right for all individuals, we know people with cancer accessing specialist palliative care services are more likely to come from higher social economic backgrounds.
There has been a shift to encourage access to palliative care to people with non-cancer conditions yet little attention has been paid to dealing with inequalities in access to services by, for example, trying to reach people from more deprived socioeconomic groups.
The first step in addressing this issue should be to identify location, extent and reach of current palliative care services. It is then important to determine whether it is the type of provision that deters people from more deprived social groups from using services.
At present, population estimates about who accesses palliative care services are largely based upon geographical position of the service (usually hospice) compared to recorded cancer deaths. However, these are estimates and don’t address use by non-cancer patients nor do they take account of the range in services, which go beyond inpatient beds to day care and hospice at-home services.
To identify effective practice in delivering palliative services to people from social and economically deprived backgrounds.
Working with 5 hospices in the North West we aim to map their services by using anonymised postcodes of people using the different parts of the service. We will map the deprivation of the hospices’ catchment areas and the socioeconomic status of the people accessing the services to identify the areas whose populations are not accessing the services they provide.
We will interview senior staff from services demonstrating broad access from socio-economically deprived areas to establish how they achieve this.
The findings will be incorporated into a national survey of palliative care units to identify effective practice nationally and also how they monitor the effectiveness of these services in reaching these groups.
Applications are made by complete an application for PhD Health Research October 2017 through our online application system. Closing date, midnight 3rd April 2017.
Informal enquires about the project should be made directly to Dr Nancy Preston or Dr Tom Keegan
Awards are available for UK or EU students only for a maximum of three years full-time study. Awards will cover University Fees and Doctoral Stipend (2017-2018: £14,553).