Primary Palliative Care Research Group

How to Live and Die Well: a video for the public, patients and family carers (Individual format)

This video is intended for individual viewing by the public, patients and family carers. It is also available in Dutch.

This short video is for everyone. It’s for people who are well just now, but may get a serious illness or life-threatening condition in the future. For people who currently live with progressive illness. It's also for family members and carers of those who are ill or may become ill, and who want to learn what can happen in the future so they can plan ahead.

For further guidance and response questions please refer to the accompanying documents: 


This video explains the reasons for early palliative care

A common misconception is that palliative care is only for the last few days or weeks of life, or only for those with cancer. However, palliative care may begin at diagnosis, and take place alongside treatment (World Health Organization). Patients, families and clinicians can all benefit from carefully integrating early palliative care with on-going treatment so people can both live and die well. Early palliative care improves life’s quality and in some cases, may even prolong life.

The video has some ideas and suggestions about how to plan ahead and what professionals can do to help. We recommend that you talk to your own doctor, nurse or carer about what this means for you. Each country has different legal requirements about health and care decision-making. Everyone is different so it is important to speak to someone who knows you and can help you and your family.

Some people find it helpful to think or talk about these questions after they watch this video:

  1. Do I know enough about my own health or the health of the person I care for? 
  2. After watching this video, what questions do I have for myself, my family and the people who care for me (like my doctor, nurse or professional caregiver)?
  3. Who do I trust and could talk to about any worries and concerns I have since watching this video?
  4. What really matters to me? Who/what helps and supports me when I am not feeling well? 
  5. What kind of things/ events do I want to avoid? What causes me fear or worries in daily life?
  6. What could I do myself to be more in control of my health and care?
  7. Have I thought about choosing a few trusted people to make decisions about health or money/property if that is needed in the future? Do they know what I want and what they might need to do for me?  Have I written my wishes down clearly in an advance statement or another legal document like a ‘Power of Attorney’?
  8. Do I have a will? This may make things easier for people after my death?

You may find additional useful information at:   

NHS Inform

Good Life Good Death Good Grief         

Dying Matters

eHospice Advance Care Planning- Resources from around the world

The information in this video is based on detailed research with patients, families, doctors, nurses and other health and care professionals about people's experiences living with declining health and dying. 'Palliative Care from Diagnosis to Death' was published in February 2017 in the BMJ. 

Read the full article here

If you wish to lead a group discussion, use the video in group format

'How to Live and Die Well' video in group format

This video is available in Dutch:

                  Dutch: The voiceover of this video has been translated into Dutch.