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Home Instead CAREGiver Amanda Scott (centre) and two colleagues who have completed the pilot end-of-life training programme.

Home Instead Senior Care has joined forces with the End of Life Partnership charity to launch a brand new City & Guilds accredited programme in end of life care to support its 9,000 caregivers.

As demand for end-of-life care at home rises, the homecare provider has unveiled the bespoke training programme to help its caregivers cope with the practical and emotional demands.

The aim is two-fold: to support caregivers in an emotionally challenging strand of care work and to improve the quality of the care provided to clients.  The course, made of up five modules, includes an introduction to palliative, end of life and terminal care; aspects of care with emphasis on oral care (poor oral hygiene can worsen the health of a client receiving palliative care), symptom management including mindfulness and relaxation alongside communication, loss, grief and bereavement.

Martin Jones, Managing Director at Home Instead Senior Care, said: “With an estimated 60% of people in the UK wishing to die at home, and rising pressure on NHS and social care resources, it is clear that more end-of-life care is going to be delivered in people’s own homes. We want to be sure our caregivers are fully prepared and thoroughly supported.

“Rather than use something off the shelf, we have invested in creating our own training programme that reflects the specific requirements of our unique model of relationship-based, non-medical care. Uniquely, we have focused as much on the needs of our caregivers as we have on the care provided to our clients.”

Karen Finch, experienced community and palliative care nurse and Educator at the End of Life Partnership, helped Home Instead design the course.  She said: “Care staff often don’t get the credit they deserve. They build such trusting relationships with their clients that they’re often the people that clients choose to have those difficult conversations with as they approach the end of their life. This training builds on what caregivers are already doing but will improve their confidence, knowledge and skills.”

The training will be launched to Home Instead’s 195-office UK network later this month.

The end of life accredited programme is the company’s second City & Guilds accredited course. Its Alzheimer’s Care Programme launched in 2012, and has so far been completed by over 4,000 caregivers.

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