People should be allowed to die at home15th November 2010
A report by Demos, called Dying for Change, has found that large numbers of people are not being given the chance to die in their own homes.
The think tank discovered that out of the 500,000 people who died every year in the UK, only 18% died at home, but 60% of people would prefer to.
The report advised that if the NHS invested in community palliative care it could make long-term savings.
The report predicted that by 2030 more deaths would occur in hospital (65%) and only 10% of deaths would happen at home.
In a decade, the think tank predicted that 20% of people would die in care homes, an increase to the current figure of 17%.
Their poll revealed that two-thirds of respondents said they would rather die in their own homes than in hospital. This means that up to 190,000 people every year are dying in hospital when they could be cared for at home.
The NHS currently pays out £20 billion on palliative care, a figure which is expected to rise to £25 billion in 2030.
Charles Leadbeater, co-author of the Dying for Change report said: "It's not just that we're living longer; part of this means that people are dying over a longer period, losing first their memory and then their physical capacities in stages."
"If we put in the right kind of supports for people to cope at home, many tens of thousands of people could have a chance of achieving what they want at the end of life; to be close to their family and friends, to find a sense of meaning in death."
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Title: People should be allowed to die at home
Author: Jess Laurence
Article Id: 16683
Date Added: 15th Nov 2010