Dispatches: Secret NHS Diaries

28 February 2011
Every year in Britain, 500,00 of us will die. While the NHS aims to make our final days as dignified and pain-free as possible, Dispatches, C4 tonight, 8pm tonight, epicts a very different reality.

According to research by Dying Matters, up to 70% of people would prefer to die at home, but of the half a million who die each year, 58% die in hospitals. 

While the NHS aims to make our final days as dignified and pain-free as possible, a health service ombudsman's recent report has shown the reality can be very different.

Dispatches has given three people cameras to film the last weeks of their lives, at home, in a care home, and in hospital.

Harry is in the final stages of emphysema and wishes to die at home, Annie has motor neurone disease and wants to remain independent for as long as possible, and Ken has suffered a stroke and finds it difficult to communicate his wishes to hospital staff.

Their experiences provide a unique insight into the gap between what we hope for compared with the painful reality of dying.

The programme will link to the Dying Matters website.

Dispatches, 8:00pm Monday, February 28 on C4

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