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End of life planning

End of life planning

We are delighted to have received funding from the Scottish government’s neurological framework to work with Strathcarron hospice and the Scottish Centre for Simulation to use the Talking Mats ‘thinking ahead’ resource to support effective  end-of-life planning. 

This project aims to help people think about and talk about their priorities and plans, should their health deteriorate. All too often, conversations about priorities and preferences for end-of-life care are put off. As a result, decisions are made during a crisis. At these times it is difficult to find out and include the views of the person and what matters to them, resulting in unwanted treatments and hospital admissions.

We have received funding from the Scottish Government’s Neurological Framework fund to train 18 people who work with people with neurological conditions to use the “Thinking Ahead’ Talking Mats resource.

We are hoping to work with 18 people from nine organisations who normally support people who have neurological conditions to think about and make plans for the future.

What will taking part involve?   

This practice development project involves three parts: training; using the Thinking Ahead resource with people with neurological conditions and taking part in an evaluation.

Most of the places have already been allocated however there 3 or 4 places left that you can apply for if

  • You work in Scotland
  • Your work with people with long term neurological conditions and or or you work in palliative care settings where some of your work is in this area
  • You can commit to undertaking and contributing to  the various stages of the project within the stages

Your commitment – training and resources

  • Attend the training will be in two parts. The first part, for those with little or no previous experience of Talking mats will be a half day on-line session on the 12th Sept 10-1.00pm  The second session will be face to face (at Strathcarron Hospice) and will be run jointly with the Scottish Simulation Centre. These will be smaller group sessions and you will have to attend one session from 10- 4.00  on either the 26th Sept , 30th Sept or the 28th Oct.  of There will be some reflective practice work to do between sessions one and two. Whilst there is no cost for the training and resources, participants will need to fund their own travel to the venue.
  • All the Thinking Ahead resources will be provided, including card-based resources and access to the digital Talking Mats.
  • Training will take place in September 2022, dates to be confirmed.
  • If you have already completed the Foundation Talking Mats course, you may be able to just attend the second session.

Using the Thinking ahead resource:

  • You will be expected to use the Thinking Ahead resource with four people living with neurological conditions and report their experiences through a questionnaire. This work can happen over a 4-5 month period.


  • In addition to completing questionnaires after each Talking Mats session, staff will be invited to attend a focus group. This will be face to face or remote, depending on what is most practical for staff. Focus groups will take place in February/March 2023.


  • There will be an opportunity for organisations to apply for one member of their staff to become a licenced Talking Mats trainer. This will enable the member of staff to continue to develop skills within your organisation. Overall, there are three funded places available on this scheme through this funding. More information will be provided towards the end of the project.

Apply to be involved

If you would like to apply for this opportunity, then please email by the 30th August and say

  • Why you want this opportunity
  • Your profession
  • Where you are based
  • Whether

Selection will be based on ensuring a wide range of professions , geographical cover and appropriate caseload for the project