Living and Dying Well in Care Homes

Helping staff to improve how they identify and support residents who are nearing the end of their life

We are proposing to launch a Living and Dying Well in Care Homes Improvement Collaborative to make a positive impact, at scale, on the identification and coordination of palliative and end of life care for individuals who live in a care home. This is inspired by the work that has emerged from the ihub's support of commitment 1 of the Scottish Government’s Strategic Framework for Action on Palliative and End of Life Care.

The improvement collaborative will aim to improve the identification and coordination of palliative and end of life care for people who are over 65 and resident in a care home.

We are intending to deliver this improvement collaborative in partnership with the Care Inspectorate and by working closely with key organisations such as Scottish Care.

Outcomes are to be defined and agreed with partners. However, it is envisaged that the improvement collaborative could: 

  • reduce the number of avoidable admissions to hospitals for individuals in care homes,
  • increase the number of people dying in their preferred place of care, and
  • increase up to date anticipatory care plans summarised on the Key information Summary (KIS).

During the improvement collaborative we will support care home staff to:

  • identify those that would benefit from a palliative approach to their care, 
  • support people living in care homes to plan for their future care needs, and where appropriate, death,
  • develop effective multidisciplinary team working focused on person-centred care, and
  • have good communication with carers, family members, power of attorney and care home staff.

Understanding the context

We are aware of some excellent resources and initiatives that exist or are being developed within the care home setting and we are keen to find out more about these and other areas of work that are making a difference. Examples include:

  • Riverside care home in Glasgow, who have been focusing on using tools to identify and respond to people with palliative and end of life care needs and recently presented a poster at the NHS Scotland event. 
  • Edinburgh HSCP who have been looking at the uptake of anticipatory care planning in care home settings.

If you have an example of practice you would like to share then please contact us via email at

We are currently engaging with stakeholders to increase our understanding of:

  • the current landscape within the care home sector,
  • the experiences of people resident in care homes and their carers
  • the experiences of staff delivering palliative and end of life care in care homes,
  • any key initiatives that are important for the improvement collaborative to link with,
  • the appetite within the sector for the improvement collaborative, and
  • any challenges in generating the interest for this work.

We will take what people share with us during our engagement to work through how we can best form and deliver the improvement collaborative.


Please see our pages on People nearing the end of their lives and Anticipatory Care Planning for key information and resources related to Living and Dying Well in Care Homes.

Interested in finding out more?

If you are interested in discussing what we have outlined, or would like to be kept updated, then please contact the Living Well in Communities team.


Twitter: @LWiC_QI