In Switzerland today, around 90% of deaths occur, not suddenly, but after a period of illness and nursing care. Convinced that high-quality research leads to better clinical practice, the SAMS launched the funding programme «Research in Palliative Care 2014 – 2018». This page provides an overview of projects, results and challenges for the future.
CHF 4.4 million were made available by the Stanley Thomas Johnson Foundation and the Gottfried and Julia Bangerter-Rhyner Foundation, through five calls, to support 34 research projects and to award 4 fellowships for an education and research stay abroad. The last call for proposals took place in 2018, with grants running until 2022.
The final report published mid-2020 illustrates where the funds were invested, presents selected projects and outlines what is needed to establish research in palliative care in Switzerland on a sustainable basis.
Downloads and links
You will find an overview of all program grantees in the synopsis below. Details concerning the research areas supported, the evaluation procedure and the evaluation criteria can be found in the program regulations.
Program regulations «Forschung in Palliative Care» (in German)
Expert Committee (in German)
To conclude the program, the SAMS, in partnership with palliative ch, held a full-day symposium in Bern on Thursday, 21 November 2019. The presentations and posters reflected the diversity of the supported projects (methods, settings, etc.) as well as interdisciplinarity and interprofessionality. More than 120 participants from all over Switzerland gained insight into the results of the projects and learned which factors promote or hinder knowledge transfer from research to practice.
In order to establish palliative care research in Switzerland on the long term, what is required are stable structures which enable constant research work, with appropriate support and funding instruments as well as defined career paths. A «Manifesto for sustainable research in palliative care and end of life care in Switzerland» was presented at the symposium. It summarises in eight objectives how the necessary structures could be created.
The SAMS will continue to report occasionally on the developments in this still young discipline after the end of its funding programme.
SAMW-Newsletter abonnieren (in German)
S'abonner à la newsletter de l'ASSM (in French)
Manifesto, programme and presentations
Manifesto for sustainable research in palliative care and end of life care in Switzerland
Programme of the Closing Symposium, 21 November 2019
Dr. Myriam Tapernoux, Swiss Academy of Medical Sciences
The funding program «Research in Palliative Care» in numbers
Dr. Sarah Ziegler, Universität Zürich
Palliative sedation in Switzerland: Medicale routine or specialized care?
Prof. Bernice Elger, Universität Basel / Université de Genève
Respect for patient self-determination as quality indicator in palliative care
PD Dr. Mathieu Bernard, Université de Lausanne
French validation of the Integrated Palliative Care Outcome Scale (IPOS)
Prof. Steffen Eychmüller, Universitätsspital Bern
A national palliative care database: A tool to better define the needs of palliative care patients in Switzerland
Prof. Markus Zimmermann, Universität Freiburg
Keynote: Development of palliative care research in Switzerland. Insights from the NRP 67 «End of Life»
Dr. Manya Hendriks, Universität Zürich / Dr. Karin Zimmermann, Universitäts-Kinderspital Zürich
Getting started: Setting up a research project in paediatric palliative care
Prof. Ralf Jox, Université de Lausanne / Prof. Tanja Krones, Universität Zürich
Advance Care Planning: Lessons learned from research with vulnerable patients
Prof. Isabelle Noth, Universität Bern / Dr. Raphael Rauch, Universität Zürich
PD Dr. Manuel Trachsel, Universität Zürich
Palliative care for patients with severe persistent mental illness
Prof. Sophie Pautex, Hôpitaux Universitaires de Genève
Comparing the effectiveness of palliative care for elderly people in long term care facilities in Europe and in Switzerland
Prof. André Fringer, Zürcher Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaften
Voluntary Stopping of Eating and Drinking (VSED) in Switzerland
Dr. Claudia Gamondi, Ente Ospedaliero Cantonale di Ticino / Université de Lausanne
Palliative ch members' attitudes towards assisted suicide: A mixed method study
Prof. Corina Caduff, Hochschule der Künste Bern
Keynote: From a humanities' perspective – The design of dying in an era of new media in literature and in palliative care