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Patients & Carers

Living with, or caring for someone, who is nearing the end of their life or who is living with a life-limiting condition can be demanding, stressful and emotional. Feeling confident that the person you are living with, or caring for, is receiving the right care, in the right place at the right time, all the time, undoubtedly helps ease those concerns. 

The National GSF Centre Statement on Euthanasia and Physician Assisted Suicide

Euthanasia is the act of deliberately ending a person's life to relieve suffering and, in line with the position of the British Government and the NHS, both euthanasia and assisted suicide are illegal under English law.

The National GSF Centre in End of Life Care affirms that its position and policy is to oppose euthanasia and assisted dying in all its forms and to support the current legal framework, which allows for compassionate and ethical care for the dying.  Any other position on this subject taken by an organisation that is GSF trained, accredited or uses some of the principles or tools of GSF, both in the UK and internationally, must state that these are their own personal views and are not representative of the views of The GSF Centre.

What the Gold Standards Framework does

The National Gold Standards Framework Centre (GSF) help doctors, nurses and care assistants provide the highest possible standard of care for all patients who may be in the last years of life. It does this by providing these key health and social care professionals with the training they need to provide co-ordinated, joined up care, so that no matter what stage of their illness your relative or loved is at, or where they are being cared for, everyone involved in their care knows about their wishes and is best prepared to ensure they are fulfilled. GSF helps link together all of the people who provide this care and enables them to ensure that the care is “cross boundary”, preventing people from falling through the cracks.

 How the Gold Standards Framework works

Thousands of care homes have completed the GSF training, with many also receiving GSF accreditation, demonstrating that they are properly identifying the people who need special care at this time of their life. Assessing what they need and planning their care in close conjunction with them and their families and carers. Most people prefer to be cared for at home, in this case their care home, and GSF accredited care homes are twice as likely as other care homes to care for people in the home up until to the end. That means very few inappropriate admissions to hospitals that can be distressing for all concerned.

GSF encourages doctors, nurses and care assistants to talk to their patients at the earliest and most appropriate time, about how and where they want to be cared for. GSF accredited GP surgeries are in a better position to provide the individualised care that people want, helping people stay at home if that’s what they want and, if a hospital admission is necessary, ensuring that their preferences are made known to the relevant hospital team.

Patients nearing the end of their life deserve the best care - the 'gold standard' of care. That means high quality, reliable and consistent support. We wholeheartedly share the belief that the health of a society should be judged by the way it cares for its most vulnerable.

GSF encourages doctors, nurses and care home staff to help families and carers too, so they can work together to avoid 'crises'. Better planning of patients' care means a last minute prescription panic or something more major can be averted.

Having your say

We have used the views and ideas of patients and carers to develop the Gold Standards Framework and will continue to do this.

The National GSF Centre does not offer direct help to individual patients and families, but we recommend contacting your own GP surgery, district nurse or care home manager to find out where you can get help locally.

Alternatively, you can use this care homes website link to find a care home in your area.

We would like to work more closely with patients, families and carers, with new resources and support. Contact us if you are interested in supporting this work or learning more about our work.


updated 25/7/19