Derbyshire Alliance Dying Matters Conference

10 May 2019

The University of Derby is hosting a full-day conference to launch the 2019 national Dying Matters campaign in Derbyshire.

Dying Matters is a coalition of individual and organisational members across England and Wales, which aims to help people talk more openly about dying, death and bereavement, and to make plans for the end of life.

Based at the University’s Kedleston Road site, the Derby event will run from 9:30am-4:30pm on Monday 13 May.

The event is aimed at doctors, senior clinicians, specialists, nurses, allied healthcare professionals and all health and social care staff caring for palliative and end-of-life individuals and their families/carers, with the intention of encouraging open and honest conversations.

There will be nine speakers presenting throughout the day, with Professor Andrew Goddard, from Royal College of Physicians of London, discussing “Talking about dying: How to begin honest conversations about what lies ahead.”

Other speakers on the day include:

Dr Kathryn Mannix: “With the end in mind”

Professor John Coggon: “The politics of end-of-life law”

Professor Sue Dyson, Research Professor in Health: “Impact of workplace culture and compassion on having these conversations”

Dr Caterina Cattel: "The subtacular death: are we prepared?”

Michelle Brown, Head of Adult Nursing: “Honest Conversations with Carers”

Martin Brock, Lecturer in Counselling & Psychotherapy: “Talking to the bereaved – what makes these conversations difficult?”

Professor Ruth Parry & Becky Whittaker: “Getting evidence into communication skills training on talking about dying: Real Talk resources for trainers”

Sharan Watson, Senior Lecturer and Award Lead for Palliative Care and Chair of the Derbyshire Alliance for End of Life Care at the University of Derby, said: “We are delighted to be hosting this year’s collaborative conference with the Derbyshire Alliance, the University Hospitals of Derby and Burton, and Timms Solicitors.

“The programme has a great breadth of content for all healthcare professionals, acknowledging the need to raise the profile of open and honest conversations about dying. Are we ready?”

Dr Maelie Swanwick, who will open the event with Sharan Watson, said: “Many people facing the end of life, whether patients or their families, want to discuss dying, but are anxious about asking questions; health and social care professionals can do so much to facilitate these conversations and reduce the fear around death and dying.”

Karen Bussooa, End of Life Care Facilitator at the University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust, added: “It is very important that we talk about death and dying and help patients, relatives, friends and our staff members prepare for death and bereavement.

“This conference is a wonderful chance for us to engage with healthcare professionals and encourage them to share their thoughts on end of life and to ensure that they are ready to talk about death and dying.”

Timms Solicitors from Derby have volunteered their support of the conference for the second year in a row.

For more information on Dying Matters awareness, visit: