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Frailty and End of Life: It’s time to act

St Christopher's CARE


1 day conference
14 Oct, 2021
9.30 to 4.30
Early Bird discount
until 14.9.21: £99
Normal price: £150
Discounted tickets: £75*
All prices include VAT
Bursaries are available
email for information
St Christopher's CARE, Sydenham, London

Book online

Useful information

Frailty and End of Life. Will you take action?

Join us in person for this one-day conference which will bring together a wide range of individuals who are committed to improving the experience of people who are frail and coming to the end of their life.

Become connected to a broad network of people who share an ambition to do things differently in relation to frailty and end of life and contribute to a report that could form the basis of a approach to an issue that will be relevant to most of us at some point in the future.

We want to facilitate connections and conversations that span health and social care providers, policy makers, commissioners, local leaders and others who have expertise in the area of frailty.

Those attending can expect to:

  • Learn more about some of the most significant challenges facing society, systems of health and social care, professionals, families and carers that reduce opportunities for people to live and die well with frailty
  • Find out more about existing initiatives that focus on the intersection between palliative care and frailty services
  • Contribute to new thinking about ways in which seemingly huge and intangible problems related to ageing and end of life can be addressed
  • Generate new interest and intention to test these ideas and refine them further
  • Discover and connect with a breadth of people who bring expertise and commitment to this important issue and are interested to work together moving forward

*OAP, unemployed, student, carer

  • What will I learn?

    Participants can expect to hear a series of provocations from experts in their field which are designed to stimulate conversations about:

    • Impact of Ageism in life and death
    • Inequalities in service provision and responsibility for their redress
    • Control and risk taking in the face of apparent vulnerability
    • Listening to and advocating for people whose voice becomes increasingly unheard
    • Starting again – a care system designed by and for people living with frailty into late old age
    • The value of dying

    They will hear a wide range of views on these areas through a blend of key note speakers, round table discussions, exhibitions and lived experience fireside chats.

  • Who is it for?

    Frailty is everybody’s business and we want to provide an inclusive, collaborative environment to come together and explore how we can do more.

    • Are you a nurse who wants to gain a greater understanding of the potential contribution of hospice care to support people who live and die with frailty?
    • Are you a health or social care worker who wants to think differently about your role and contribution to the end of life care experienced by people who are frail?
    • Are you a carer or family member who is open to thinking differently about partnership with others to change things for those living with frailty?
    • Are you a person with lived experience of living with frailty who would be open to participating in discussions as a means of improving services?
    • Are you a community leader who is ready to recognise your part in changing the experience of people living and dying with frailty in your area?

    If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this conference is for you. Come and be part of the conversation!

    Bursaries are available for this conference, email for further information

  • Speakers

    If you’re a leader in the field of fragility research or policy development and would like to form part of our expert line up, please get in touch with

    sarah profile

    Sarah Mistry CEO, British Geriatrics Society (BGS)

    Sarah leads the BGS, working closely with BGS officers, the wider membership and BGS staff to deliver its vision of the UK as a place where all older people receive high-quality, patient-centred care when and where they need it. Sarah joins us to pose questions about the impact of ageism in life and death.

    She will ask participants to consider that fact that whatever way frailty is expressed within the context of late, old age, the common language is one branded by negativity.

    This leads to ageism in society, which means that older people with frailty are often overlooked and under cared for, particularly in end of life care. Older people with frailty need better endings.

    Patrick Vernon Associate Director, Centre for Ageing Better

    Patrick is the Associate Director for Connected Communities at the Centre for Ageing Better and has over twenty years’ experience working across mental health, public health, heritage and race equality and is well known in health, local government and the voluntary sector.

    Patrick joins us to discuss the inequalities in service provision and probe about who is responsible for their redress. He will explain how service development has often taken place in isolation, leading to the creation of services which don’t always prioritise what is important to the individual. How can we change this? Who should be involved?

    lucy profile

    Dr. Lucy Pollock Geriatrician and author

    Lucy read medicine at Cambridge University and St Bartholomew’s Hospital and trained in general and geriatric medicine in London before taking up a consultant post in Taunton in 2001. She wrote ‘The Book About Getting Older’ for her patients and their families, but it seems to chime with medics and associated professions too.

    Lucy joins us to ask question about the boundaries of control and risk taking in the face of apparent vulnerability. She will implore that just because we can doesn’t mean we should. But who decides? What helps move care from being risk averse to risk confident?

    frailty author profile

    Madeleine Bunting Author, columnist and public speaker

    Madeleine is an award winning author of five books of non-fiction and two novels. Her book on care, The Labours of Love, was shortlisted for the Orwell Prize 2021 and longlisted for the Baillie Gifford 2020. The former Associate Editor and Guardian columnist is a regular broadcaster on BBC Radio and a public speaker.

    Madeleine joins us to ask whether the answer to better care for the vulnerable is simply to start again? She will ask us to think about how we redesign systems to make them work for for people living with frailty into late old age, making service joined up so that these people, and their families, are not lost in a maze of bureaucracy.

    CA profile

    Caroline Abrahams CBE Director, Age UK

    Caroline is Charity Director at Age UK, co-chair of the Care and Support Alliance, one of the Government’s ‘Social Care Green Paper’ advisors. She is a member of the NHS Assembly and was a Senior Responsible Officer for a strand of the NHS Long Term Plan concerned with older people.

    Caroline joins us to challenge the system that leaves families and unpaid carers negotiating a complex framework of services for people who are deemed frail. Who should be asking the questions? Who needs to listen? Who should record the goals and wishes to live well right to the end and how can we make sure that we advocate for the voices of the unheard?

  • What will the course look like?

    The conference will be delivered through a blend of provocations from industry experts, leading to round table discussions, exhibitions and interactive lived-experience sessions.


    This event will take place in person at St Christopher’s Centre for Awareness and Response to End of life (CARE) in Sydenham, London.

    Attending the conference

    In order to attend this event, you will be required to provide evidence that you have received both doses of your COVID-19 vaccination OR evidence of a negative lateral flow test, taken the morning of the conference.

  • Programme

    9.00 Registration & networking
    9.30 Welcome & opening remarks
    Heather Richardson & Caroline Nicholson

    Impact of Ageism in life and death
    Sarah Mistry CEO, British Geriatrics Society   

    Inequalities in service provision and responsibility for their redress
    Patrick Vernon OBE Social Activist, Associate Director Centre for Ageing Better Inequalities

    The Value of Dying
    John Powell MBE Associate of the Directors of Adult Social Services    

    10.15 CONNECTING & CONTRIBUTING in Action Groups
    11.00 Coffee break

    Control and risk taking in the face of apparent vulnerability
    Dr Lucy Pollock Geriatrician and author       

    Starting again – changing the care system
    Madeleine Bunting Author, columnist and public speaker  

    Listening to and advocating for people whose voice becomes increasingly unheard
    Caroline Abrahams Director, Age UK   

    11.45 THINKING DIFFERENTLY in Action Groups
    12.45 Moving from talking to action
    Helen King
    13.00 Lunch and networking
    14.00 ACTION: How to work differently
    Explore market stalls – showcasing how specialist palliative care has developed to become age attuned to older people with frailty over the last 2 years in the following areas:
    Frailty Assessment, Advance Care Planning, Care Homes, Dementia, Mapping resources & Partnership working.

    In conversation with older people with frailty and their carers. What questions have we forgotten to ask? What are the things we’ve taken for granted?

    Heather Richardson

    16.30 Conference close and reception

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If you have any questions about this or any of our other courses, please contact the Education team who will be happy to help

020 8768 4656

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St Christopher’s Education Centre and VAT charges

At St Christopher's, a registered charity, it is important for us to maximise any surpluses to reinvest in the objectives of the charity.

Unfortunately, the manner in which we undertake our training currently means we are not able to invest as much of our surplus as possible, therefore from the 1 December 2017, St Christopher’s Education Centre will charge VAT at the standard rate on our training courses, the reason for this change in pricing is twofold:

i) We want to be able to reinvest any surpluses made from training back into all of our charitable objectives rather than only Education

ii) We want to be able to reclaim the VAT on costs relating to developing and running the training courses