The Delaware Quality of Life Coalition (DQOLC), a broad coalition of individuals, organizations and state agencies aimed at improving the lives of Delawareans living the final phase of their lives and helping those that care for them. This represents a reorganization of the Delaware End of Life Coalition (DEOLC).
The DQOLC will:
- Educate, empower and support people to make the best choices for themselves and their families leading to the best life possible.
- It will be a clearinghouse and coordinator for efforts to increase education and health literacy of the public especially regarding palliative and hospice care
- It will advocate for increased health and social services for people living with serious illness or near the end of their lives and their caregivers
- It will promote education and training of health care providers at all levels
- It will work to increase programs in our health care and social services systems like Advance Care Planning that help provide whole person care to those living with serious and terminal illness.
The Delaware Health Care Commission in 2016 sponsored a 6 month End-of Life Work Group with a wide representation of stakeholders to look at the status of care and support for people in our state near the end of their life. The report was submitted and accepted May of 2016.
The report identified a need for an ongoing entity to act as a clearinghouse and coordinator for efforts to improve the care and support of this segment of our population. The report also identified several priority areas to focus on including but not limited to:
- Community wide grassroots Advance Care Planning
- Data capture on the identified population; their care and outcomes
- Advancing quality palliative care in all care settings
- Promoting availability and timely referrals to hospice
- Addressing the needs of caregivers
For other themes and recommendations you are encouraged to read the report available via the link at the bottom of the page.
It was felt by the majority of the participants on this work group that the already existent DEOLC would be the best vehicle to carry out this charge.
DEOLC was, at the time, a collaborative, all volunteer, non-profit organization started in 2000 made up of professionals and persons passionate about quality palliative and hospice care. It was a small group with a limited budget known best for its yearly Excellence Awards Dinner honoring those that work in the palliative care and hospice community in Delaware.
It was recognized that in order for this group to take on the expanded charge of a state-wide coordinating body it would need to grow in membership and solicit input and resources from others around the state with shared interests. This might include health care payors, elder law, health care system providers and administrators, home care, long term care and hospice leaders, educational institutions, professional societies, state agencies, faith and community groups and interested individuals.
The DEOLC changed their name to the DQOLC and is now going through an effort to expand their membership to meet this new charge and goal.
DQOLC has already taken a big step by taking responsibility of the Delaware Medical Orders for Scope of Treatment (DMOST) program for Delaware. We are working with the Delaware Health Information Network (DHIN) to get the new state-wide DMOST registry up and running.
There are many state-wide efforts already in progress to improve the quality of life for people navigating the final phase of their lives. We feel we can get more accomplished if we work together.