Dorothy House Secures Research Funding to Enhance the Quality of End-of-Life Intimacy Support 

  • 21 March, 2024
  • News

Dorothy House Hospice Care is thrilled to announce that we have secured funding from the BSW Research Hub for our pioneering project on enhancing intimacy support for patients and their partners during palliative and end of life care. This significant funding, awarded under the Research Capability Funding (RCF), will facilitate critical research aimed at improving our understanding and addressing this complex area. 

Research into palliative intimacy support

RCF is provided to research active NHS organisations by the Department of Health and Social Care. BSW Research Hub and BSW Integrated Care Board use these funds to improve local health and care research infrastructure, to support the development of co-designed research projects, and to ultimately contribute to the health of our population through evidence generation and use within our health system. Palliative intimacy support research

This research project, looking at intimacy at end of life, will help to better understand patient and partner experiences, identify care needs, uncover barriers to discussing intimacy, and develop strategies to better support healthcare professionals in addressing these needs, ultimately enhancing the quality of end of life care. 

Qualitative interviews with Dorothy House patients, partners and bereaved partners began in May 2023, and interviews with healthcare professionals commenced in October 2023 laying the groundwork for this research. The RCF funding will facilitate the extension of qualitative interviews across various hospices within the region, broadening the scope to capture diverse perspectives on intimacy needs from patients, partners, bereaved partners, and healthcare professionals. 

What is the long term goal of the research?

Our long-term aim is to develop an educational intervention to inform and train healthcare professionals and the wider healthcare community to feel more confident to discuss intimacy needs with patients and their partners towards the end of life. This research will enable hospices to improve the effectiveness of services benefitting the health and wellbeing of patients and their partners. 

Beyond this phase of research will be aspirations to secure future funding to expand this work to include a more national outlook. 

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