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Gold standards framework: improving community care
  1. Penny Hansford and
  2. Helen Meehan
  1. Penny Hansford is Director of Nursing, St Christopher’s Hospice, London (p.hansford{at}, and Helen Meehan is National GSF Lead Nurse, National GSF Team, John Taylor Hospice, Erdington, Birmingham (helen.meehan{at}


The Gold Standards Framework (GSF) is a model that enables good practice to be available to all people nearing the end of their lives, irrespective of diagnosis. It is a way of raising the level of care to the standard of the best. Through the GSF, palliative care skills for cancer patients can now be used to meet the needs of people with other life-limiting conditions. The GSF provides a framework for a planned system of care in consultation with the patient and family. It promotes better coordination and collaboration between healthcare professionals. The tool helps to optimise out-of-hours’ care and can prevent crises and inappropriate hospital admissions. This article will describe the tool in both the primary care and the care home setting and provide a case example to demonstrate its use in practice. Conflicts of interest: Penny Hansford none, Helen Meehan is the Lead Nurse on the National GSF Team

  • Care of the dying
  • Care planning
  • Communication
  • End-of-life care
  • Gold Standards Framework
  • NHS End of Life Care
  • Programme

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