- The OECD report was launched on February 7, 2023 through an online event to highlight the growing priority of improving end-of-life care as well as discuss the way forward in terms of policies in the areas of workforce, quality, funding and governance. It brought together experts, practitioners and representatives of civil society.
- Watch the event
- Download the presentation for the launch
The report finds that end-of-life care does not always reflect the wishes of the patient and that, across OECD countries, hospitals are the predominant place of death, accounting for more than 50% of deaths. Key findings of the report are that:
- Too many people receive sub-par care in their last days or months of life. Access to services is often insufficient and unequal, especially at home
- Professionals often fail to discuss choices that provide people a dignified end of life, and their care preferences are rarely recorded
- Care provided at the end of life often fails to alleviate people-suffering and limit unnecessary treatments
- Costs at the end of life are high for both the public purse and families, while not necessarily delivering quality of life, and there are questions about which different care models could improve outcomes for patients while reducing costs
- Putting end-of-life care higher in the policy agenda and implementing a more comprehensive set of policies would make the end of life a more meaningful and humane experience for people and their relatives, and improve the outcomes achieved for the resources invested
Mean percentage of people using palliative care of hospice for the deceased who died at age 65 or over, by country
Share of people who used hospice or palliative care before dying at age 65 or older, 2017-2019
Note: Weighted using cross-sectional weight from last core interview.
Source: Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE - Waves 7-8), Health and Retirement Study (HRS - Wave 14).
Follow us on Twitter via @OECD_Social