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Lamb: Relatives should have 'complete confidence in care'

Care and support minister Norman Lamb has said it is "vital for relatives to have complete confidence in care" when loved ones are being treated in hospital or looked after in care homes.

Experts agree the Liverpool Care Pathway, if applied properly, can help patients die a dignified and pain-free death, but, as we have seen, there have been too many unacceptable cases where patients or their families were ignored or not properly involved in decisions.

There have also been reports of food and fluids being denied to people inappropriately.

It is vital for relatives to have complete confidence in the care that their loved ones are receiving. This is why we want to hear from people with experience of the LCP, where it met the high standards expected and where things went wrong.

I urge people to get in touch to share their experiences, so we can ensure that lessons are learned and things put right.

Review invites families to share 'end-of-life' experiences

Reports suggest that doctors are establishing "death lists" of patients to be put on the Liverpool Care Pathway (LCP), which allows family members who have witnessed loved ones undergo a controversial end-of-life regime to share their experiences with health officials.

Articles also claim that hospitals might be employing the method to cut costs and save bed spaces.

But medics have argued that the pathway has "transformed" end-of-life care, saying it can offer peaceful, pain-free deaths when used properly.

The review is being led by Baroness Neuberger.

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Family members to review end-of-life regime

Family members who have witnessed loved ones undergo a controversial end-of-life regime, which can involve withholding food and drink from terminally ill patients, are being asked to share their experiences with health officials.

People who have seen family or friends on the Liverpool Care Pathway (LCP) are being invited to put forward their thoughts to a review into use of the regime at hospitals and care homes.

The review will hear evidence from patients, families and health professionals. Credit: Hugh Macknight/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The review, chaired by crossbench peer Baroness Julia Neuberger, will hear evidence from patients, families and health professionals before reporting to ministers and the NHS Commissioning Board this summer.

The LCP - which recommends that in some circumstances doctors withdraw treatment, food and water from sedated patients in their final days - has come under intense scrutiny recently.