Challenges of Domiciliary Carers when Providing End-of-Life Care

Heather Watson

  • Abstract

    Given the choice, most people would prefer to be cared for and die at home, if they are assured of high-quality care and proper support for their families/carers. Domiciliary care workers play a large role in the care of terminally ill people at home. However, the experiences of patients and their informal carers regarding domiciliary care can be variable. The training needs of domiciliary care workers are often overlooked, despite the recommendation in the End of Life Care Strategy that this group of staff has training needs. This article discusses the role and education requirements of domiciliary care workers regarding end-of-life care. It presents an end-of-life care educational programme for domiciliary carers and domiciliary care managers. It identifies the issues that arose during the training programme in terms of the ability of domiciliary care workers to provide end-of-life care. The aim is to increase nurses’ understanding of the problems experienced by domiciliary care workers. Recommendations are made for improvement to end-of-life care practices for domiciliary carers. Conflicts of interest: none

  • Contributors

    Heather Watson


    Correct at article publish date

    Heather Watson is Education Facilitator, Dorothy House Hospice Care, Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire. Email:

    Original publishing information

    • Publisher: St Christopher's Hospice
    • Publish date: 01/01/2011
    • Volume: 1
    • Issue: 3

    Permissions: © 2015, Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to

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