Change in Activity of Palliative Care Services during the Covid-19 Pandemic: A Multinational Survey (CovPall)

Katherine E. Sleeman, Rachel L. Cripps, Fliss E.M. Murtagh, Adejoke O. Oluyase, Mevhibe B. Hocaoglu, Matthew Maddocks, Catherine Walshe, Nancy Preston, Lesley Dunleavy, Andy Bradshaw, Sabrina Bajwah, Irene J. Higginson, Lorna K. Fraser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)
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Objectives: To identify factors associated with palliative care services being busier during Covid-19. Methods: Cross-sectional online survey of UK palliative care services (April to July 2020) (CovPall). Ethical approval was received from King's College London Research Ethics committee (LRS-19/20-18541). The primary outcome was change in busyness (five-point ordinal scale). Ordinal logistic regression investigated factors associated with the primary outcome. Results: Of 277 responses, 71 (26%) reported being a lot more busy, 62 (22%) slightly more, 53 (19%) about the same, 50 (18%) slightly less, and 28 (10%) much less busy. Increased business was associated with homecare services (odds ratio [OR] 1.93, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.15-3.25), nursing care at home (OR 3.24, 95% CI 1.70-6.19), publicly managed services (OR 2.20, 95% CI 1.11-4.34), Covid-19 cases (OR 1.01, 95% CI 1.00-1.01), and staff shortages (OR 2.71, 95% CI 1.64-4.48). Conclusion: Services providing community care, and publicly managed services, may have been better able to respond to escalating needs during Covid-19. This has potential implications for both service delivery and funding models.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)465-471
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of palliative medicine
Issue number3
Early online date20 Dec 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2022


  • Covid-19
  • end-of-life care
  • hospices
  • palliative care
  • pandemics
  • severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2


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