This NICE quality standard defines clinical best practice within this topic area. It provides specific, concise quality statements, measures and audience descriptors to provide the public, health and social care professionals, commissioners and service providers with definitions of high-quality care.

This quality standard covers all settings and services in which care is provided by health and social care staff to all adults approaching the end of life. This includes adults who die suddenly or after a very brief illness. The quality standard does not cover condition-specific management and care, clinical management of specific physical symptoms or emergency planning and mass casualty incidents.

This quality standard was previously called the quality standard for end of life care for adults.

31 October 2013: Following the independent review of the use of the Liverpool Care Pathway (LCP) for the Dying Patient  and the subsequent announcement of the phasing out of the LCP, interim amendments have been made to this quality standard. These amendments, which relate to the removal of direct and indirect references to the LCP, reflect the gradual phasing out of the LCP and ensure that the quality standard remains current.