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RPS and Marie Curie collaborate on pharmacy end-of-life care


RPS and Marie Curie collaborate on pharmacy end-of-life care

Community pharmacies can now sign up to the Daffodil Standards for palliative and end-of-life care.

The Standards are aimed at improving the care provided to patients approaching the end of their life and are the result of a partnership between the Royal Pharmaceutical Society and the charity Marie Curie, whose iconic image is the daffodil.

Pharmacies will be able to display the daffodil mark as a sign of their commitment to improving the care they provide as they work through the self-assessment and actions for the eight individual Daffodil Standards.

These Standards identify areas of good practice and enable development of robust processes to support the delivery of compassionate, holistic care to patients living with an advanced serious illness, or at the end of their lives, and their carers and wider family network. They also align with the standards used by general practices developed by the Royal College of General Practitioners and Marie Curie.

By adopting the Standards, pharmacies must commit to making improvements in at least three of eight core aspects of care each year, with the aim of having reviewed all of them after three years. These relate to:

1. Professional and competent staff

2. Early identification of patients and their carers

3. Carer support, before and after death

4. Seamless, planned, coordinated care

5. Assessment of the unique needs of each patient

6. Quality care during the last days of life

7. Bereavement care after death

8. Pharmacies as hubs within compassionate communities.

RPS president Claire Anderson said: “We’re delighted to be able to launch these quality improvement standards with Marie Curie and hope they provide positive support to community pharmacy teams and their patients at a challenging time.”

Darrell Baker, RPS project lead, added: “The Daffodil Standards provide a roadmap to help community pharmacy teams deliver the best possible care on a range of issues, including symptom management, communication with patients and their carers, and collaboration with other healthcare professionals.”

Dr Sarah Holmes, Marie Curie chief medical officer and palliative care consultant said: “We know that the support that people receive from colleagues in community pharmacy can have a significant impact on the care of those approaching the end of life and the bereaved. Having someone they can go to who they already know well, and trust, is vitally important at such a difficult time.”

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