Training and supportive programs for palliative care volunteers in community settings

Dell Horey, Annette Fay Street, Margaret Mary O'Connor, Louise Audrey Peters, Susan Fiona Lee

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17 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Palliative care is specialised health care to support people living with a terminal illness and their families. The involvement of volunteers can extend the range of activities offered by palliative care services, particularly for those living in the community. Activities undertaken by palliative care volunteers vary considerably but can be practical, social or emotional in nature. The types of training and support provided to these volunteers are likely to affect the volunteers effectiveness in their role and influence the quality of care provided to palliative care clients and their families. Training and support can also have considerable resource implications for palliative care organisations, which makes it important to know how to provide this training and support as effectively as possible. OBJECTIVES: To assess the effects of training and support strategies for palliative care volunteers on palliative care clients and their families, volunteers and service quality. SEARCH METHODS: We searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL, The Cochrane Library, 28 April 2014); MEDLINE (1946 to 28 April 2014); EMBASE (1988 to 28 April 2014); PsycINFO (1806 to 28 April 2014); CINAHL (EbscoHOST) (1981 to 28 April 2014); ProQuest Dissertations and Theses (1861 to 28 April 2014). We also searched the Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (DARE, The Cochrane Library); reference lists of relevant studies; and conducted an extensive search for evaluations published in government reports and other grey literature including the CareSearch database ( (September 2004 to February 2012) and websites of relevant organisations, for unpublished and ongoing studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1 - 30
Number of pages30
JournalCochrane Database of Systematic Reviews
Issue numberArticle No CD009500
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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