Dying Matters launches in Wales
The extension of Dying Matters to Wales was announced at a national event in Cardiff on Tuesday 13 May. It comes after research commissioned for Dying Matters Awareness Week, which ran from 12-18 May, revealed people in Wales are the least likely in Britain to have written down preferences for their future care should there come a time when they are unable to make decisions for themselves. Meanwhile, 85% of the Welsh public believe that people in Britain are uncomfortable discussing dying and death.
At the launch, Dying Matters displayed You Only Die Once Awareness Week posters and leaflets translated into Welsh.
The three-year plan to improve end of life care in Wales is called 'Together for health – delivering end of life care'. It aims to ensure people are well supported whether they choose to die at home or in hospital, and to improve the way families and professionals work together to plan for the end of life.
Specific aims include better training for health professionals to develop the skills needed to support people to die in their place of choice; and communications training to boost health professionals' competence in end of life conversations with patients and their families. People with terminal illnesses and their loved ones will also be asked to rate the care they receive.
Launching Dying Matters Wales, Minister for Health and Social Services Mark Drakeford said: “I am so pleased to launch Dying Matters in Wales today. It’s so significant to have an organisation here dedicated to changing public attitudes, behaviours and understanding.”
Dying Matters Chief Executive Claire Henry will be speaking at a second conference in Wales on Thursday 29 May. As with the Cardiff conference, the Llandudno conference is being held to encourage open and honest conversations about planning and preparing for the end of life.