Patients prefer end-of-life care at home

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Patients who receive home-based end-of-life care are less likely to require emergency 
hospital treatment than those who do not, new research suggests.

Home care patients are also significantly less likely to die in hospital, according to the study.

Researchers from the Nuffield Trust examined almost 60,000 terminally ill patients, half of whom received care from the Marie Curie Nursing Service.

While 12 per cent of those who received the service were admitted to hospital as an emergency at the end of life, more than a third of patients who received “standard” care were admitted.

And 77 per cent of those who utilised the service died at home, compared with 35 per cent of the control group, researchers found.

Dr Jane Collins, chief executive of Marie Curie Cancer Care, said: “Most people want to be cared for at home at the end of their lives and don’t want to spend their final days in hospital.”