End of life care has been taken as the main focus to illustrate the arguments with regard to evaluating complex interventions. Social care practitioners are major providers of end of life care and work alongside health care colleagues, with increasing calls for – and policy emphasis – on integrated working to deliver care with greatest benefit for people and their families.


This methods review aimed to examine the Medical Research Council’s Guidance on Developing and Evaluating Complex Interventions (MRC GDECI) and its application to research on palliative and end of life care, and potential wider application to research on adult social care practice.


The review is a resource for social care researchers, practitioners and managers, educationalists and students involved in developing and evaluating complex interventions, particularly new services or re-configurations of care and support for people at the end of life.

The review examines the strengths and limitations of the MRC GDECI and offers recommendations for future use.

The review draws on research case examples – in particular the Methods of Researching End of Life Care (MORECare) project. This project developed the MORECare statement detailing best practice guidance for research evaluating end of life care to improve study quality and extend the existing MRC Guidance for research on palliative and end of life care.

MRC guidance on developing and evaluating complex interventions: Application to research on palliative and end of life care
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