Supporting... Marie Curie

November 22, 2019 6:53 PM

Marie Curie pledgeLib Dem Parliamentary Candidate David Kendall said: "I am pleased to support Marie Curie at this election and have signed the pledge". @mariecurieuk


At this election Marie Curie is asking all candidates and all political parties to pledge to:

  • Scrap the six-month rule that obstructs terminally ill people from gaining access to benefits unless they can prove they only have six months left to live.
  • Offer free personal care to everyone with a terminal illness, regardless of their age or finances.

In the next 10 years, more than six million people will die in the UK. Of this number, 75% will need palliative care. Our NHS is already under extreme pressure, particularly in emergency departments, where nearly 30% of admissions are for people in the last year of life, at a cost of £2bn annually. Many of these admissions are preventable, caused by inadequate provision of care in the community that mean people are admitted to hospital unnecessarily and can struggle to leave once they have been admitted.

The benefits system is meant to cushion terminally ill people against the financial impact of terminal illness. However, the current rule which requires them to prove they have six months left to live to get fast-track access to benefits means many miss out on the support they need. This rule is opposed by most doctors and nurses and leaves many families struggling to cope with the income loss and additional costs caused by terminal illness.

Our proposals for the next government will help keep people with a terminal illness out of hospital unless they have a real clinical need to be there and help keep our NHS sustainable - by ensuring that everybody with a terminal illness gets fair and fast access to the benefits they need and are entitled to so they can afford to live at home, and by supporting people to live and be cared for at home or elsewhere in the community.