End of life care at home

Making dying at home an option

70% of people would prefer to die at home than anywhere else. For most of us, spending your final days, months or years at home is more comforting given the familiar surroundings and the fact that loved ones can visit more easily.

For several years, Home Instead has offered end of life care. We see clients relieved when they learn that they can receive support without having to leave the place they love best. It can be a distressing time for the whole family, and not only do we support the client’s physical needs, we also provide emotional support to everyone involved. It’s a team effort, as we work with other professionals involved in the client’s care, such as community nurses, collaborating to make the end of somebody’s life as comfortable and dignified as possible.

Care Professionals who deliver end of life care have undergone our specialist training. It’s a comprehensive programme consisting of five modules covering the key practical elements of palliative care, with a focus on oral care given that poor oral hygiene can cause a further decline in health. Care Professionals are also trained on how to manage symptoms that clients typically show, using techniques such as mindfulness and relaxation to keep them as calm as possible.

Anyone receiving end of life care will only respond well if it’s delivered by somebody who can communicate well with them. Highlighted in the training programme is the need to act as a source of comfort and provide emotional support, particularly when somebody shows signs of being stressed.

Having been available for a few years, our end of life care has given many people the chance to die peacefully and calmly at home. We’re proud to see our care teams across the country develop strong bonds with families, even when their loved one has passed away, providing solace at such a difficult time.

In 2019, our end of life training won a Princess Royal Training Award. Winners are decided based on three ‘Hallmarks of Excellence,’ taking into account efficiency, effectiveness, and whether it has a positive impact on the organisation. As if an accolade awarded by Princess Anne wasn’t enough, the programme is assured by City & Guilds, the global leader in skills development & apprenticeship schemes.

Gone are the days when working in care is simply a role. We offer a learning pathway which equips our Care Professionals with a range of skills to support people with a range of care needs. With the number of people dying at home increasing (rising from 35% in 2004 to 50% in 2022 according to the Nuffield Trust) it’s crucial we build a specially trained workforce. We’re delighted to play a part in giving people more options and control at a time of life when they deserve it the most.