End of life care for adults (QS13)
This NICE quality standard defines clinical best practice within this topic area. It provides specific, concise quality statements, measures and audience descriptors to provide the public, health and social care professionals, commissioners and service providers with definitions of high-quality care.
This quality standard covers all settings and services in which care is provided by health and social care staff to all adults approaching the end of life. This includes adults who die suddenly or after a very brief illness. The quality standard does not cover condition-specific management and care, clinical management of specific physical symptoms or emergency planning and mass casualty incidents.
31 October 2013: Following the independent review of the use of the Liverpool Care Pathway (LCP) for the Dying Patient and the subsequent announcement of the phasing out of the LCP, interim amendments have been made to this quality standard. These amendments, which relate to the removal of direct and indirect references to the LCP, reflect the gradual phasing out of the LCP and ensure that the quality standard remains current. This quality standard will be reviewed following the outcome of the work of the Leadership Alliance for the Care of Dying People (LACDP).
- National End of Life Care Programme (2011): Draft spiritual support and bereavement care quality markers and measures for end of life care
- NHS National End of Life Programme and National End of Life Care Intelligence Network (2011): End of life care quality assessment tool
- Department of Health (2009) End of life care strategy: quality markers and measures for end of life care
- NICE cancer service guidance: CSGSP Supportive and palliative care
- QS13 End of life care for adults: quality standard (large print version)
This page was last updated: 10 March 2014
Quality standard formats
Information for the public
Implementation tools and resources
The summary of the statements in the quality standard written for patients, carers and those with little medical knowledge and may be used in local patient information leaflets.
Full quality standard
The published full quality standard for health and social care professionals, public health practitioners, commissioners, service providers and patients, carers and the public, with quality measures, outcomes definitions and data sources.
Many organisations share NICE's commitment to improve quality by making it clear what quality care is for patients and the public, health and social care professionals, commissioners and service providers.
So that these standards reach the widest possible audience, some of these organisations have endorsed the end of life care for adults quality standard.
These organisations are: