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Researchers within the University of Birmingham’s School of Nursing have today launched a new programme that will focus on end-of-life and palliative care research.   

palliative care

The launch of the End-of-Life Care Research Programme was held today, Tuesday 24 October, at the University of Birmingham’s Medical School with guest speakers including international experts, academic and clinical colleagues, service user representatives and staff from across the University.

The new research programme will investigate service design in end-of-life care; decision making at the end of life; quality measures for end-of-life care; and service improvement activity. It is being led by Dr Alistair Hewison, a Senior Lecturer in the School of Nursing and Research Lead for Nursing.

Speaking at the launch Dr Hewison said: ‘This is a very important development for the School of Nursing and the University. The establishment of the programme will enable us to focus more directly on investigating the areas identified by the Priority Setting Partnership (PeolcPSP). 

‘This is consistent with the aim of the programme, which is to develop the evidence base for effective end-of-life and palliative care in order to improve the quality of services and patient care. We look forward to working with our partners to achieve this aim.’

The End-of-Life Care Research Programme will build on and grow many existing partnerships, including those with, Marie Curie Hospice – Solihull, Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice, University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, Birmingham Children’s Hospital, Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust, and the Gold Standards Framework.

International relationships will also be further developed, building on existing active partnerships with Virginia Commonwealth University in the USA and the University of Ottawa in Canada.

The School of Nursing recently underwent a period of expansion. Research in the School is now focused on three main areas that reflect staff expertise: End-of-Life Care Research; Organisation and Delivery of Services Research; and Risk, Abuse and Violence Research.