At this moment, over a million people in India are in unimaginable pain. We refuse to look the other way. We choose to hear the cry, and to do what we can.
Please join us. Your help is needed.

New palliative care centre opened in Anand, Gujarat

2016 August 31

Pallium India, has collaborated with Pramukhswamy Medical College, Anand, Gujarat, to start a palliative care centre.

Anand, Gujarat

Dr Prabhakaran Nair, Project Head, Pallium India, writes:

During routine monitoring of the new palliative care center at Pramukhswamy Medical College, Karamsad, Anand, I had the opportunity to attend the anniversary celebrations of their cancer center. The very well organized function was attended by patients and relations who expressed their happiness on receiving excellent care. I had the opportunity to meet and discuss palliative care with Smt Amrita Patel, the Chairperson of the Trust, Dean Dr Utpala Kharod and many of the faculty in Oncology and Neurology who regularly refer patients to the palliative care center. Smt Patel was all praise for the effectiveness of palliative care in the service of chronic patients. She offered all support to this venture. We would like to express our gratitude to her.

The committed services of Dr Alpa Patel, Dr Dinesh Kumar, Dr Shyam and Dr Namrata along with Ms Rekha Mcwan has helped the centre to present good results.

Indian Alliance of Patient Groups (IAPG) meets in Delhi

2016 August 31

IAPGPeople with health issues (often we call them patients for want of a better term) must be on the forefront of health planning and advocacy. After all, health care is all about them, is it not?

The Indian Alliance of Patient Groups (IAPG), an umbrella body of 12 organizations, met up in New Delhi on 18 August 2016. Dr Geeta Joshi, palliative care physician and deputy director of the Regional Cancer Centre at Ahmedabad, represented Pallium India.

We thank Dr D S Ratna Devi, founding member of IAPG and Founder & CEO, DakshamA Health, for this important initiative.

New palliative care service opened in Mizoram

2016 August 31

India Map - MizoramPallium India collaborated with Synod Hospital in Aizawl, Mizoram to start a palliative care service. This is Pallium India’s second project in Mizoram. Ten years ago, we had helped establish a palliative care unit in the Regional Cancer Centre in Aizawl, under the leadership of Dr Jeremy Pautu.

On the 30th of August, we helped conduct an opioid access workshop. Unlike the usual opioid access workshops that we do, here that part of the work was easy. The Drug Controller was very well-informed. There were no issues on that subject brought up during discussions, despite the background of a high incidence of addiction in Mizoram.

There was a very healthy discussion on involvement of voluntary organizations and on reaching out to the community, much of it led by Dr Jeremy Pautu, Dr Eric Zomawia of National Health Mission and Dr Sanghluna Renthlei.

MizoramWe had a pleasant surprise. The health minister Lal Thanzara not only attended the meeting, but stayed on for an hour and a half. We have high hopes for Mizoram.

Thank you Dr Sanghluna for organising the event and for leading the palliative care program. Thank you Dr Lalchhanhima Ralte for connecting us with this institution in the first place and for reaching out into the community.

Finding Peace Beyond the Pain

2016 August 30

“During my morning rounds as I enquired about his pain, his eyes welled up with tears. As I asked gently, “Would you like to talk?” he started to cry, great heaving sobs filled with pent-up suffering.”

Dr Seema Rao, consulting psychiatrist from Mumbai, narrates this account of Sunder, a 38-year old driver who came to her hospice. He was suffering from penile cancer that had metastasized to the lymph nodes, lungs, and liver. “I don’t think you can do much for me. I have seen so many doctors, taken so many medicines, nothing helps. I want to die,” he said, his voice resonating with despair.

The narrative titled “Finding Peace Beyond the Pain” describes the journey of Sunder in the hospice. A caring husband and a doting father, he came to the hospice by force, in immense pain and suffering. He stayed on by choice and found the peace he was looking for, ably supported by the dedicated hospice team. He was able to live the last few months of his life as comfortably as was possible, and left this world in peace, with dignity. The narrative reiterates the belief that hospice, with its philosophy of active “total care” is an ideal place for addressing the concept of “total pain.”

Read the complete narrative published in the Journal of Pain and Palliative Care Pharmacotherapy.

The Journal of Pain and Palliative care Pharmacotherapy is an indexed journal that has made the narratives free access. The journal welcomes your Narratives on Pain, Suffering and Relief. Tell your story to the world and help improve palliative care awareness. If you have a story to narrate, share it with us. Write to info@palliumindia.org

Scaling up Palliative Care initiatives under National Health Mission

2016 August 30

MoHFW meetingA two-day meeting on “Scaling up Palliative Care Initiatives under National Health Mission: A National Consultation” was held on 11th and 12th August 2016 at National Institute of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), New Delhi. MoHFW officials including Prof Jagdish Prasad, DGHS, Dr. Alok Mathur, Mr.Satyanarayan Dash, and Dr Fukru Tullu, team leader, NCD, WHO Country office for India attended the program. Dr Nandini Vallath represented the WHO Collaborating Centre at TIPS.

The National Program for Palliative Care (NPPC) is now operational since 2012; however budget allocation has not been made and funds are now available for states directly from the NCD flexipool. Programme implementation plan (PIP) for palliative care needs to be submitted by the states. Model PIP is available on the website of the Directorate General of Health Services.

Palliative Care still lacks clarity despite being in practice in India for two decades. The group emphasized the need to include all diseases and not just cancer under the purview of palliative care.

A detailed action plan was drawn up for each state and the person(s) responsible for this identified.