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.

MetaECHO Conference 2017

2017 September 21

Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes – ECHO is an innovative model that is rippling across the globe and improving access to care. Dr Sanjeev Arora, professor of gastroenterology at University of New Mexico, is the pioneer founder of the ECHO concept. He began ECHO by empowering community level practitioners in managing Hepatitis C. The aim is to demonopolize knowledge and allow the experience and best practices of experts to reach those practitioners working in the community where it is most applicable.

ECHO achieves this through a guided practice model using hub-and-spoke knowledge-sharing virtual networks, led by expert team and attended by practitioners from different settings who share similar patient concerns. It combines brief didactic presentations and case-discussions to communicate the nuances of the themes identified. TIPS began the 1st ECHO based training palliative care in India in Jan 2017 and is currently conducting four ECHOs on different themes in palliative care. (Click here for details on upcoming ECHO sessions.)

The 3rd MetaECHO conference was held at Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA from September 12th to 17th, with the theme – Infinite Possibilities. The event, coordinated by Dr Max Watson, brought in ECHOists from across the world who shared their experience of force multiplication of knowledge through his truly democratic platform. TIPS ECHO team – represented by Dr Nandini Vallath participated in a panel discussion on using ECHO for palliative care education. She presented an overview and five hey learnings from the experiences of conducting palliative care ECHO in India and India’s that targets the largest population, spanning the entire country of India and beyond. The other panelists were Dr Suresh Reddy and Sriram Yennu from MD Anderson who shared experience as the biggest cancer hospital in the world, with target population of specialist teams throughout Africa; and Chris Piromalli from Alaska who gave perspective of engaging American Indians and Alaska Natives through a multidisciplinary approach palliative care ECHO involving the Community Health Aides/Practitioners.

In ECHO all teach and all learn – Dr Sanjeev Arora

Isolation, Loneliness and Depression

2017 September 18

A new Singapore study has shown that social isolation and loneliness were closely associated with depressive symptoms in adults. Those who were lonely were more likely to be divorced, unemployed, widowed, have nonmental chronic conditions or previous depression. Loneliness was also associated with depressive symptoms independent of any social isolation indicator.

“The results of the study establish a significant and unique association of different social isolation indicators and loneliness with depressive symptoms in community-dwelling adults aged 21 and above,” the researchers wrote. The study drew data from the Population Health Index Survey targeted towards community-dwelling adults in Central Singapore. A total of 1,942 individuals participated in the survey.

Read the complete report here: Social isolation, loneliness tied to depressive symptoms in adults

KUHS establishes Centre for Studies on Health Care Counseling and Palliative care

2017 September 15

There is often a lot of talk about healthcare ignoring the human being. A lot of talk; but usually little action.

In a major step towards improving this situation, Kerala University of Health Sciences (KUHS) now establishes a University Centre with the potential to focus on human suffering and on information needs rather than just diseases.

KUHS becomes the first university in India not only to integrate palliative care into its undergraduate medical curriculum, but also to establish a centre dedicated to health care counseling and palliative care.

We congratulate and thank Dr MKC Nair, the Vice Chancellor of KUHS and his team for this timely action, modeling the way for health education in India.

The palliative care fraternity in Kerala now has the opportunity and responsibility to assist KUHS in implementation of this imaginative programme.

Last seven days to send responses to ICMR

2017 September 13

On 8 August 2017, we had reported on the draft definitions pertaining to end-of-life care law that ICMR has posted on its website.

The deadline for submitting comments on it has been extended by five days. The last date as it stands now is 20 September 2017.

This is an important matter for everyone of us. Do please take a few minutes to study the document and to send in your responses by logging onto http://www.icmr.nic.in/icmrnews/comments_palliative.htm

Palliative care in diabetes

2017 September 12

For anyone who associated with palliative care only in cancer: please see the article by thediabetescouncil.com You may not only be surprised to see that diabetes accounts for nearly 5% of palliative care needs globally; but also to learn that cancer forms only about one third of all. See https://www.thediabetescouncil.com/palliative-care-and-advanced-terminal-illness-for-patients-with-diabetes/

Thank you, Jasmine Williams, for sharing it with us.