PhD position 'Empowering Palliative Care Teams in Flemish hospitals'

Katholieke Universiteit Leuven


July 22, 2022


PhD position 'Empowering Palliative Care Teams in Flemish hospitals'

(ref. BAP-2022-447)

Last modification : Tuesday, June 21, 2022

The palliative support team (PST) at UZ Leuven consists of a multidisciplinary team of doctors, nurses and psychologists. The members of the team have years of experience in palliative care. For this PhD, the team works closely together with doctors and nurses from other relevant disciplines to provide excellent guidance in building palliative expertise and research skills. The research project will be conducted at the research unit 'Gerontology & Geriatrics', a clinical scientific department attached to the Department of Social Healthcare and Primary Care of the KU Leuven.

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According to the new definition of the PICT, a practical measuring tool to identify palliative patients in time, 19% of the patients admitted to non- specialist departments in the hospital are palliative. These figures from the umbrella organisation 'Palliative Care Flanders' clearly demonstrate the importance of quality palliative care hospital-wide. Social changes, such as an ageing population, an increase in the number of chronic patients, evolving technologies, predict that the need for palliative care will increase even further in the coming years. Hospital-wide care teams will be more frequently confronted with the need for palliative care, possibly with no prior experience, thus lacking the necessary knowledge and skills.

Because of their palliative expertise, multidisciplinary nature and hospital- wide commitment, the PST is not only important for supporting the necessary knowledge and competencies for quality palliative care, but also for implementing a palliative care culture. The PST supports and motivates other multidisciplinary care teams to develop palliative care within their discipline or department. To date, there is lack of evidence on how the PST can best take on this advisory, supportive role. The ultimate goal of this project is to develop, implement and evaluate an intervention that supports PSTs in empowering care teams hospital-wide to provide palliative care.

  • You have a Master's degree in Nursing or Midwifery, Psychology, Medicine or relevant related disciplines. Graduating master students within these fields are encouraged to apply.

  • You have an interest in palliative care and its organisation.

  • You have good social and communication skills to work in a team but can also work independently.
  • You have an excellent knowledge of Dutch and English, both verbally and in writing
  • Offer
  • A professional, multidisciplinary team with years of experience in scientific research and palliative care.

  • The opportunity to deepen knowledge within the palliative care field and the Flemish hospital system.

  • An excellent opportunity for early career researchers who wish to further develop their research skills.
  • PhD position 4 years full time with starting date autumn 2022 (concrete starting date to be determined in consultation)
  • Interested?

    For more information, please contact Inge Bossuyt, nurse specialist of the Palliative Support Team, tel: +3216343560 or mail:

    You can apply for this position by sending us a cover letter (your motivation, objectives, skills, experiences) and your CV. You will be contacted personally for the selection interviews.

    KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at

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    PhD position 'Empowering Palliative Care Teams in Flemish hospitals'

    PhD position 'Empowering Palliative Care Teams in Flemish hospitals' The palliative support team (PST) at UZ Leuven consists of a the team have years of experience in palliative care. specialist departments in the hospital are...