Quality Indicators for Palliative Day Services: A modified Delphi study

Noleen McCorry, Sean O'Connor, Kathleen Leemans, Jo Coast, Michael Donnelly, Anne Finucane, Louise Jones, George Kernohan, Paul Perkins, Martin Dempster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The goal of Palliative Day Services is to provide holistic care
that contributes to the quality of life of people with life threatening-illness
and their families. Quality indicators provide a means by which to describe,
monitor and evaluate the quality of Palliative Day Services provision, and
act as a starting point for quality improvement. However, currently, there
are no published quality indicators for Palliative Day Services.

Aim: To develop and provide the first set of quality indicators that describe
and evaluate the quality of Palliative Day Services.

Design and setting: A modified Delphi technique was used to combine best
available research evidence derived from a systematic scoping review with
multi-disciplinary expert appraisal of the appropriateness and feasibility of
candidate indicators. The resulting indicators were compiled into ‘toolkit’,
and tested in five UK Palliative Day Service settings.

Results: A panel of experts independently reviewed evidence summaries for 182 candidate indicators and provided ratings on appropriateness,
followed by a panel discussion and further independent ratings of
appropriateness, feasibility, and necessity. This exercise resulted in the
identification of 30 indicators which were used in practice testing. The final
indicator set comprised 7 structural indicators, 21 process indicators, and 2
outcome indicators.

Conclusions: The indicators fulfil a previously unmet need among Palliative
Day Service providers by delivering an appropriate and feasible means to
assess, review, and communicate the quality of care, and to identify areas
for quality improvement.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPalliative Medicine
Early online date19 Nov 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 Nov 2018


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