Thursday, 1 November 2012

Liverpool Care Pathway – The Stitch-up Begins

Norman lamb has been contributing to this subject on radio talk shows in recent days. He has been contacted by constituents. He has heard the uproar around him. But he is not listening.

The following Telegraph article reports -
In some cases trusts have set goals explicitly requiring them to ensure that a set number of dying patients are placed on the pathway.
Actually, these goals have been set by the DOH CQUIN protocols! Once targets are set, they must be met.

Here is The Telegraph -

Liverpool Care pathway concerns must be challenged, says minister

Failings in the operation of a controversial death "pathway” for terminally ill patients must be challenged, the care minister insisted.
Norman Lamb: Liverpool Care pathway concerns must be challenged
Norman Lamb: Liverpool Care pathway concerns must be challenged Photo: ITN
8:31PM GMT 01 Nov 2012

Norman Lamb said he was “absolutely determined” to prevent a repeat of cases in which families of people given intensive end of life care claimed they were not consulted or even informed when treatment was withdrawn from their loved-ones.
He was speaking after research for The Daily Telegraph disclosed that hospital trusts have been paid millions of pounds in recent years for hitting targets associated with use of the Liverpool care Pathway.
In some cases trusts have set goals explicitly requiring them to ensure that a set number of dying patients are placed on the pathway.
Other payments were made for ensuring that the regime was operated to set standards.
The LCP, which involves withdrawing invasive treatments or tests from patients in their final days and hours, was developed to ease suffering in dying patients.
In some cases it can involve withdrawing food and fluids in combination with administering powerful pain relief.
Doctors have hailed it as a means of giving dignity and comfort to dying people but it has been mired in controversy amid claims that it may have hastened death or been used on people who were not imminently dying.
It has been adopted by around 85 per cent of hospital trusts in England, almost two thirds of whom have received some form of financial reward.
Mr Lamb insisted that the payments had ensured a “good outcome” in many cases by ensuring that families were consulted.
But he said that it was important to “take note” of cases where this had not happened or families not properly involved.
“That is completely wrong, and families are right to complain when that happens,” he said.
“It’s that sort of approach which has to be challenged and I’m absolutely determined myself to make sure that we do challenge that.”
But speaking on the BBC Radio Four’s World At one programme, he added: “I want to hear where things have gone wrong, and I want to make sure we address that, absolutely, but an awful lot of good things have happened in recent years to improve the experience at the end of life.
“25 years ago, doctors simply weren’t trained in what to do at the end of a patient’s life – that led to some dreadful experiences.
“Doctors are now better-trained to understand when it’s appropriate to take appropriate actions to ensure that the patient can die with dignity, and that’s what this should be about ultimately.”


  1. In March 2010, I along with several others met with Norman Lamb MP [pre election] and a document entitled 'The Misuse of Syringe Drivers' was handed to him.

    Journalists were present and he said he would help.

    We have not heard from him!

    Jan -

  2. Norman Lamb and others in the NHS such as the NHS Regulators, the Health Service Ombudsman know fully about my own case.

    In January 2006 my Father who was terminally ill, died on the MacMillan Palliative Care Ward at Sheffield's Northern General Hospital.

    He had been DENIED end of life morphine and was left laying in his own blood and urine.

    In 2009 my Dad's story featured in the Patients Associaltion Report as Case No. 6:,%20people%20not%20statistics.pdf

    Christine Beasley, the Goverment's Chief Nurse wrote to apologise to me for the poor nursing care that Dad had received at Sheffield's MacMillan Palliative Care Ward at the Northern General Hospital.

    What has followed since has been eye opening!
    Documents were released [we were now out of the 3 year legal time frame ] that show that not only was Dad's morphine more than halved during the dying process, but also that the controlled drug book and other charts had alterations to them.

    Alterations to controlled drugs make the case criminal.

    It would appear that morphine is being denied the dying, stockpiling it for the use on those that are put on the Liverpool Care Pathway! Or does the morphine just get syphoned off for some other use?

    To read how each and every organisation has reponded to the evidence that has come to light, please see:

    Thank you.