New MSc in End-of-Life Healthcare Ethics

UCC logo

Ireland’s first multidisciplinary Postgraduate qualification dedicated to the examination of  issues and ethics in End-of-Life care will commence this Autumn.

The Msc in End-of-Life Healthcare Ethics will be based in UCC’s School of Nursing & Midwifery & School of Medicine and will be taught on a part time basis over two years.

The Msc has its origins in the collaboration between UCC, RCSI and the Irish Hospice Foundation’s Hospice Friendly Hospitals programme which led to the production of the Ethical Framework on End-of-Life Care, a tool to guide healthcare practitioners through the medical, ethical and legal issues around End-of-Life care.  Additional details on the course structure, entry requirements and application proceedure can be found HERE

Irish Hospice Foundation Scholarship

Irish Hospice Foundation logo

The Irish Hospice Foundation is  offering a scholarship to cover fees for one successful student on the Msc. This scholarship is open to all applicants to the Msc. Scholarship applicants should state in writing (in 1000 words or less) their name,  work role and motivation for enrolling on the course. Scholarship applications should also seek to illustrate how they anticipate the course to impact patient care and ways the course will be used to inform and to educate within their organisation. Applications should be sent to the course co-ordinator, Dr. Joan McCarthy, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Brookfield Health Sciences Complex, University College Cork, Ireland. Application deadline for this course is July 8th

Further details on the Irish Hospice Foundation scholarship can be obtained by contacting Orla.keegan@hospice-foundation.ie



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Launch of Quality standards for end-of-life care and audit on end-of-life report

Standards development coordinator Helen Donovan & Minister Mary Harney at the launch of 'Quality standards for end-of-life care in Hospitals' Clontarf castle May 19

Wednesday’s Hospice Friendly Hospitals conference ‘End-of-life care; from the margins to the mainstream’ saw the launch of the report on the first ‘National audit of end-of-life care in Hospitals in Ireland’ and the new ‘Quality standards for end-of-life care in Hospitals’

These publications mark the end of phase one of the Hospice Friendly Hospitals programme and represent a significant contribution to the understanding of current practice and future development of end-of-life services in Ireland. The audit, which surveyed end of life care in 24 acute hospitals (75 % of the acute sector) and 19 community hospitals (20% of community sector) presents a unique multi dimensional approach to assessing death and dying in Irish hospitals illustrating the  varying perspectives on quality of care at end of life from doctors, nurses, hospital staff patients and relatives.

Among the audit findings are;

  • 20/25% of patients could have died at home were adequate supports in place
  • Information given to patients’ relatives is often not adequate
  • Quality levels vary across diseases with cancer at the high end of the spectrum and dementia at the lower end
  • The hospitals treatment of the family has a lasting effect

The Quality standards, launched by  Minister Mary Harney at Wednesdays conference were  developed as a framework around which to implement quality care. They have been arranged around the four key areas of Hospital – Staff – Patient -Family and aim to provide access points from which hospitals can integrate compassion and communication into processes and practice.

The quality standards and the audit report are available to download from the Hospice Friendly Hospitals website or hard copies can be obtained from the Irish Hospice Foundation