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Covid laws greatly impacted loved ones’ deaths


70% of people found that the Covid-19 pandemic restrictions prevented their loved one having the death they would have wished for, according to a new survey for the Irish Hospice Foundation.

The ‘Time to Reflect’ survey found that the pandemic had a profound impact on people’s experience of death, dying and grieving.

Almost 60% of people said they were unable to spend the time they wanted to with a loved one before they died.

Almost 70% of people found that the pandemic restrictions prevented their loved one having the death they would have wished for. When answers of ‘somewhat’ or ‘partly’ are added, that figure rises to 81%.

Only half of respondents reported that their loved one received the level of care they needed at the end of life.

The survey was completed by 2,259 participants between November 2021 and February 2022 and one-in-five participants classified themselves as healthcare workers.

Over half had experienced the death of someone close to them.

The report recommends placing a high importance on person-centered compassionate end-of-life care with family involvement in the event of future public health crises or emergencies.

Chief Executive of the IHF Paula O’Reilly said the recommendations must be used to inform future public health responses.

The report also calls for greater investment and resourcing in bereavement support services, including for healthcare workers impacted by grief.

The IHF has published the report today to coincide with its 8th biannual forum on ‘End of life on dying and grieving well in our Communities’.


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