Difficult Conversations: Communicating with people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder about the End of Life

Difficult Conversations: Communicating with people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder about the End of Life

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Whilst many people live well with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) for many years, it is the cause of death for approximately 25,000 people a year. It can therefore be extremely difficult to know how and when to start conversations about end of life issues, for fear of taking away a sense of hope. We asked around sixty people affected by COPD (patients, carers and former carers) how, when and with whom they would like to have conversations about end of life care. The guidance is based entirely on these discussions. It presents a unique perspective, containing practical hints on what to say and more importantly, what not to say. This guidance was produced with support from the British Lung Foundation and the Department of Health.