The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales welcomes the latest guidance from NICE – the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence – on including a person’s spiritual or religious needs in their care during the last few days of their lives.
This guidance complements well their existing guidance on the last year of life and explicitly recognises that truly personalised care only happens when we ask people about their cultural, social, cultural, spiritual and religious preferences. This includes people whose spiritual or religious belief is of any faith, and includes people who are humanist and non-religious. This is an important win for our diverse nation and an important win for person-centred care.
The Bishop for Day for Life, the Right Reverend John Sherrington said:
“We welcome this sensitive, respectful, person-centred approach by NICE and the way spiritual and religious needs of people have been recognised as being of equal importance to other aspects of a person’s care.
“We need to be better at discussing death, and the spiritual and other issues which arise for the dying person and their loved ones.”
The Art of Dying Well website – artofdyingwell.org – helps people with this journey. It is already being used by professionals, carers and patients.
You can read the NICE guidance here.