Palliative care under-funded and patchy, report says

Over-reliance on charity funding for palliative care in the UK exacerbates inequalities and has created a patchy service, a report says.

The NHS pays for 30 per cent of palliative care services, while charities and voluntary organisations foot the bill for the rest, according to the report by the Royal College of Physicians.

This reliance on charity funding has ‘led to poor planning and overall integration of services’, the report says.

It highlights a ‘lack of commercial incentives for the development of new pharmacological interventions in palliative medicine’ as a ‘threat to the exploitation of scientific advances to improve treatment’, and calls for NHS funding to plug the gap.

The report also calls for additional training for health professionals in palliative care.

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