Primary Palliative Care Research Group

About us

A multi-disciplinary team, based at the University of Edinburgh with strong international links. Working to improve palliative care in the community.

We have developed and utilised innovative research methods internationally to provide evidence in a coherent series of studies that palliative care could greatly extend its impact for patients if it:

  1. broadened its focus from cancer to include all progressive life-threatening disease
  2. started earlier than in the last few days or weeks
  3. addressed more than the physical dimension that has recently been prioritised
  4. extended to all clinical settings
  5. extended to low-income countries
  6. included carers and
  7. promoted health and resilience even in dying.

The Edinburgh Primary Palliative Care Research Group has shifted the boundaries and the traditional understanding and practice of palliative care by establishing new models to extend the reach and nature of end-of-life care. Having developed and tested a new theoretical understanding of illness trajectories and care pathways at the end of life, the research group has used research findings to advocate for a redesign of services so as to make palliative care more accessible. Palliative care strategists and health professionals internationally are increasingly adopting this framework with its emphasis on services according to need not diagnosis or prognosis.

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Who are we?

A multi-disciplinary team drawn from hospital, hospice, primary care and social science settings; based at the University of Edinburgh with strong international links.

What do we do?

We conduct research and teaching to explore and realise the potential of palliative care to be delivered by generalists in the community and doctors and nurses in hospitals.


Prof Scott Murray Research in a Nutshell Video Screenshot
Professor Scott Murray explains the vision of the group in a 1 minute video - as part of the 'research in a nutshell' series.

Who funds us?

We are grateful to receive funding from a variety of sources.