Living well and dying well are what we all hope for. As we face dying and death, we need all the support we can get. It comes from many places, but we all know about the challenges associated with crowded emergency departments, the wait for hospital beds, the inadequate number of community placements, the stress on home care, the shortage of personal support workers … the list goes on.
Most Canadians (75 per cent in recent surveys) want to die at home, but most cannot. Most palliative care today is still provided in the hospital. The reasons are complex and include the lack of adequate home care palliative services and the limited support available to families and caregivers as they struggle to support a loved one at home. Conversations about dying and death are often left too late, when families and friends are in a state of panic, and are unsure what to do, and therefore turn to the local hospital to help them out.
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