To ask the Secretary of State for Health
(1) how often the Liverpool Care Pathway has been used in each primary care trust in each of the last five years;
(2) what obligation there is for medical staff to discuss the Liverpool Care Pathway with family or carers of a patient;
(3) what guidelines are issued relating to the use of the Liverpool Care Pathway.
The Liverpool Care Pathway (LCP) was developed by the Marie Curie Palliative Care Institute in Liverpool as an approach to support the delivery of good care in the last days of life. Where the LCP is utilised, senior doctors and nurses involved in the patient's care should agree that death is very likely to be imminent and that being placed on the pathway will be beneficial to the patient. The decision to use the pathway should always involve the patient if possible, and family members if not.
The Department does not collect information centrally on how often the LCP has been used as a possible option for treating patients. The latest information on the LCP is available from the LCP website, which also provides information on how the pathway should be used: