We know from our experience of supporting people who are nearing the end-of-life, how upsetting and distressing it can be for all the family. It is a very emotional time for all involved that requires a sensitive, compassionate and respectful approach to care. Our high-quality end-of-life care at home provides effective management of any symptoms a person may be experiencing, whilst supporting a person’s emotional and psychological needs. There are many benefits to staying in the secure, familiar and comfortable surroundings of your own home when you need end-of-life care at home.
Moving at any time in life in later years can be traumatic and an upheaval. For those who need end-of-life care at home UK, the thought of moving into a care home setting or a hospice can only add to the stress and upset they are already likely to be feeling. Here we explain what end-of-life care at home is, the many benefits of it and how we can help you if you need this type of care. We know that 70% of the population would like to pass away in the comfort of their own home, but less than a quarter do. Through providing a specialist end-of-life care pathway, we are proud to have enabled 77% of our clients to pass away in the comfort of their own home.
What is end-of-life care at home?
End-of-life care at home is a specialist and supportive care service for those who are nearing the end of their life and wish to receive this care in their own home. Most people who are receiving end-of-life care are in the last year of their life. The approach to providing high quality end-of-life care at home is to ensure that the person receiving care is as comfortable as possible in the time they have left.
During this time people should talk to friends and family about their wishes to ensure they are considered in the way you are cared for right up until the end-of-live. End-of-life care at home requires a dignified, respectful and sensitive approach, not only to the person being cared for but all the family. The focus of end-of-life live-in care is to make sure a person can continue to stay in their treasured home and avoid receiving this care in a hospital or a hospice setting.
Planning end-of-life care at home
Planning end-of-life care is something none of us wish to do. Many of us simply do not want to address what the future holds, what will happen at the end or how or where care will be received. However, for families in this situation the earlier you can have an open and honest conversation about your wishes and preferences the sooner a plan of end-of-life care at home can be put in place. This specialist care plan will not just aim to meet your care needs but will address your choices and wishes that you would like considered, right to the very end.
A survey conducted by Dying Matters found that only 4% of people had written a plan of care that considered and addressed their wishes at the end-of-life. However, the survey also identifies the sense of relief families feel when asked about their wishes and can take positive steps to put the right care in place that meets an individual’s holistic needs.
End-of-life care services
Specialist nurse-led care
Importantly for those who need end-of-life care at home we provide nurse-led care. This means our professional carers are trained to monitor and identify any changes in your health, responding appropriately and avoiding any unnecessary hospital admissions. As part of our commitment to delivering high-quality end-of-life care, we monitor and measure health outcomes to ensure we continually improve the care we provide. When needed, we work with leading nursing companies and other healthcare professionals to ensure end-of-life nursing care at home can be delivered safely and effectively.
Managing and administering medications
We know how important it is to effectively manage medications for those receiving end-of-life care. Our professional carers are trained in medications management and use an electronic medications system to ensure all medications are managed proactively and efficiently. They will also collect prescriptions from the pharmacy.
Ensuring safe mobility in and around the home
Uniquely, we have an in-house Occupational Therapist, Jackie Cooper who will provide expert guidance and advice as to what equipment can help improve safe movement and mobility around your home, whilst providing recommendations as to home adaptations that will make life at home easier and more comfortable.
Companionship and psychological support
We know how important companionship is for someone nearing the end-of-life – just a listening ear as and when you need it can have very positive effects on well-being. We ensure that a perfectly matched, compassionate and sensitive carer understands how you wish to receive end-of-life care at home, ensuring life remains interesting, stimulating and enjoyable. Your carer will be there for you to support your emotional and psychological needs, which we know is so important when receiving palliative care.
Providing discreet and sensitive personal care
This can include the task-orientated aspects of caring for someone, like bathing and getting dressed, but also those that promote self-esteem, like having your nails maintained, or your hair styled. Many people who need end-of-life care at home have continence concerns and our respectful carers will ensure this is handled sensitively and effectively.
Planning and cooking meals
We understand the importance of nutrition and hydration for a person nearing end-of-life. We work to create specialist menu plans that meet these needs, whilst working with a person’s preferences. If you need help to feed yourself our carer is on hand to support you with this.
Facilitating social arrangements in the home
Your carer will ensure you can see all your friends and family as and when you want to, which we know is so important and will welcome any visitors you have.
Trips and visits out of the home in your local community
Our carers know how important it is to ensure you can continue to do as much you wish and that you remain connected to your local community – whether that is a stroll round the local park or visiting friends or those shops you always have.
This includes cleaning of all rooms and vacuuming throughout to keep your house to the standards of cleanliness and tidiness you always have.
Caring for your much-loved pet
Carers will happily support looking after your pet.
Benefits of end-of-life care at home
One-to-one care around the clock
Having a dedicated carer providing one-to-one care who truly understands your needs and wishes at end-of-life can improve the experience of end-of-life. In a care home you would not get this level of dedicated care. You have peace of mind that your carer is with you 24 hours a day to care and support you.
Highly personalised approach to end-of-life care
A uniquely developed care plan designed to meet your care and support needs, will also focus on how you wish to live day to day to the end-of-life. If you were to receive end-of-life care in a care home, how you spend your day would be dictated by timetables and set routines.
Familiar and comforting surroundings
Being cared for in the privacy, familiarity and comfort of your own home, with all your memories and treasured possessions around you has significant benefits to overall well-being. If you have a pet you can continue to spend time with you at home, with a carer supporting you. In a care home or hospital setting you would not be able to keep your pet.
Peace of mind for you and your family
If you are receiving end-of-life care at home, you can see your family and friends at any time you wish without having to stick to visiting times or visiting routines. If you are a couple and one of you needs to receive end-of-life care, then you can stay together as a loving couple right to the very end-of-life. Given the benefits family can bring to you overall self-esteem and mental health well-being during this time, many people choose end-of-life care at home over moving into a care home.
Why choose The Good Care Group?
We have been providing high quality, live-in care to families in England and Scotland for over 10 years. At the heart of our award-winning service is enabling people to live independently in their own home with an improved quality of life. Our approach to care at home means our clients can achieve improved health and well-being. For families they benefit from peace of mind and reassurance that their loved one is receiving the very best care and support.
A perfectly matched care team
A live-in care service usually involves two carers working a two-week rotation. They will be carefully matched working with you and your family. We make sure they are skilled and equipped to meet all your care and support needs. Our focus on matching means the chosen care team shares common interests and backgrounds. We know this means life is enjoyable for everyone. Your care team really gets to know you and your needs, which means you get the consistency of care.
Expertly trained carers
All our professional carers are required to complete our leading training programme before they care for our clients. Our programme has been created with leading charities and clinical experts. It goes beyond mandatory requirements in the care sector. Carers are then equipped to provide high-quality care and support for those living with specialist conditions. Our carers never stop learning new skills to further enhance the care they provide.
Continuity of care
Unlike an agency we employ our carers. This means they are committed to us, as we are to them. Carers enjoy the security of being employed, which means they stay with us longer. Those who work for agencies move around more. For families this means that you get continuity and consistency of the same care team caring for your loved one. This means high-quality care can be achieved with improved outcomes and no disruption to your loved one’s life.
In-house clinical experts
We have a dedicated team of in-house clinical experts. This includes a specialist consultant nurse, who also provides Admiral Nurse services to those living with dementia. Our management team consists of nursing professionals. They guide our carers to provide safe and effective nurse-led care at home. We also have our own in-house Occupational Therapist (OT) who works closely with healthcare professionals and our care teams. Our OT provides guidance and advice that enables people to live well in their own home with any equipment they may need. These experts lead, monitor and support our care teams to deliver best practice nurse-led care at home.
Innovative care technology
Unlike any other live-in care provider, we have our own online care community. Families, healthcare professionals and carers can access up to date information about the care being provided. It enables more effective monitoring, which means issues can be responded to efficiently. For our families it provides a reassuring window into the care their loved one is receiving. Our carers also use the online community to share ideas and support each other. It provides a vital connection which is important when remote working. Carers will use the online community so their clients can enjoy time online. This includes video calls with family, so they feel connected. Clients can use it to shop online or browse the web.
Improving health outcomes
Every decision we make is driven by delivering improved health outcomes for our clients. Our digital technology allows us to predict risk and shape the care we provide. We measure health outcomes.
We want to know we are improving the quality of our clients’ lives every year.
Our health and well-being aim to reduce:
Behaviours that challenge
Antipsychotic drugs in dementia care
Falls in the home
Readmission to hospital
Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
They aim to promote:
Excellent nutrition and hydration
Enjoyment in life
Highest service rating from care regulators in England and Scotland
Unlike introduction agencies we are fully regulated in England and Scotland. This means the care and support we provide is regularly inspected. We are the only dedicated live-in care provider in England to achieve an ‘Outstanding’ rating by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). We have achieved this rating in all five measures – safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led. In Scotland, our service has been inspected by the Care Inspectorate (CI). It has achieved the highest rating of a 6 (Excellent) for quality of care and support and 5 (very good) for staffing, management and leadership. We know this provides families with peace of mind that their loved one is receiving the best possible care.
A fully managed service
Families benefit from our fully managed service delivered by care experts. This means you do not need to worry about supervising and managing the carer looking after your loved one. Our professional carers are supervised by an experienced care manager and supported by clinical experts. We provide this support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Your dedicated care manager will be on hand to support you, your loved one and our carer teams. We invest in our care management team to ensure they have enough time to give the support everyone needs. With our fully managed service, families do not have the burden of managing the care arrangement themselves. We know this means families can have peace of mind, whilst enjoying quality time with their loved one. They do not have to worry about the tasks of caring.
Local teams with national coverage
We operate throughout England and Scotland with a local approach to management of our teams near you. Each dedicated care manager local to you has only a small number of clients to support. This means they can provide higher levels of monitoring and support than other home care providers. It also means a highly personalised approach to care can be delivered.
Case study: Anne’s story – the dignity and comfort mum deserved
My mum was 97 and very frail following a series of strokes over the last 10 years. After another significant stroke, she was admitted to hospital, where she was also diagnosed with heart failure.
When the doctors told us that mum now needed end-of-life care, whilst this was distressing for us all, I knew straight away there was only one place she would want to receive it. In her own, dearly loved home, surrounded by her memories, her family and friends and her faithful cat Freddie.
I contacted The Good Care Group, with a view to bringing mum home for the last time.
One of their Care Managers visited us in hospital before she was discharged, to understand mum’s needs and wishes. She spent time talking to the doctors and nurses and created a holistic plan of care which would keep mum comfortable and pain free at home, living with dignity and respect in the time she had left.
The Care Manager knew the two professional carers on her team she wanted to look after mum. It came as such a relief to learn that both were experienced in delivering end-of-life care at home and were extremely well trained.
They cared for mum in her room, with her favourite music – Mozart – playing gently in the background. Whenever she woke, day or night, she was treated to the sound of his symphonies, which seemed to keep her calm and at peace. Freddie her cat was invited onto the bed, where he had always slept, and Mum loved to have him nearby.
The carers cooked her small portions of her favourite meals – it was agreed she would eat what she wanted, when she wanted. They used her favourite scented soap to wash her each day and spent hours just sitting, holding her hands, rubbing cream into her skin, keeping her nails trim and her make-up just so – exactly as she instructed them to do!
Even in the last days, when it was sometimes hard to tell if she knew we were there, they did not deviate from her wishes. She passed away a few weeks later, with Freddie on her lap and her favourite music playing softly.
We were all able to visit before the end came and I cannot speak highly enough of the carers who made sure mum felt safe and comfortable and allowed us to spend such precious time together.
TALK TO US ABOUT YOUR END-OF-LIFE CARE NEEDS
Our friendly and experienced team is here to help you and your family make sense of the options available to you. Call us today – we will help you every step of the way.