Pallium India celebrated World Palliative Care Day with a get-together of patients and families at Government Youth Hostel, Trivandrum. Famous playback singer G Venugopal inaugurated the function and mesmerised the audience with his songs. The event, titled “Thalolam 2017” was a full-day program and was attended by people who are wheelchair bound or suffering from life limiting diseases, and their families.
Dr. Biju Prabhakar IAS, Secretary, Social justice department, delivered the keynote address. Kalyan Ram, DGM, State Bank of India and Dr. C Mohanan Pallium India trustee spoke on the occasion. After lunch, there were cultural programs by patients, Mentalism show by Preeth Azheekkode and performace by Balloon Artiste Shijina Preeth.
For more information on the importance of World Hospice and Palliative Care Day, please visit: http://www.thewhpca.org/world-hospice-and-palliative-care-day
One of South India’s leading deemed universities, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (SBV), Puducherry, has started the process of incorporating palliative care into its undergraduate medical curriculum.
We are certain that this would encourage all such institutions to bring in changes that allow professionals to work with more humaneness. Pallium India is proud to collaborate with Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth for this noble cause.
As per Human Rights Watch report, ‘Unbearable Pain, India’s Obligation to Ensure Palliative Care’ (2009), only 5 out of 300 medical colleges in India have integrated some instruction on palliative care into their curricula. Capacity building through palliative care education is also one of the recommendations by WHO. Palliative care approach envisages application of palliative care principles appropriately into practice by healthcare professionals.
We could firmly say that students of SBV are already into palliative care – if wall paintings in their palliative care ward and volunteering works by students are anything to go by. If SBV train students to make their patients smile wholeheartedly, it will be difficult for other students to compete with them without this important training! Moreover, life threatening conditions, dying, end-of-life care and death cannot be ignored anymore.
The Lancet commission on Global Access to Palliative Care and Pain Relief which included 61 authors from 25 countries, has published their report ahead of world palliative care day which falls on 14 October 2017. Of the 6 crores of people worldwide who need palliative care, 1/6th, that is one crore, are in India. Only a tiny minority of them has access to basic pain relief or palliative care.
Though the government of India announced a national program for palliative care in 2012, the budget allocation has been grossly inadequate and progress in the last five years is negligible. The Indian Parliament changed its draconian Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, a major hindrance to access to pain relief, in 2014; but even today most Indian states have not implemented it. And sadly, basic pain management and principles of palliative care are even now not taught to medical and nursing students.
The theme of world palliative care day 2017 exhorts, “Don’t leave those suffering behind”. “People with advanced illness and pain are weakened by disease; they have no voice. Only a public outcry against the injustice done to them can save the situation”, says Dr.M.R.Rajagopal, the chairman of Pallium India who is one of the five lead authors of the Lancet report.
The theme for write-up is the same as that of World Palliative Care Day 2017: “Palliative care and Universal Health Coverage: Do not leave those suffering behind”.
Word Limit: 2000
Send your write-up as PDF to the email id: email@example.com
- Deadline for submission: 5 November 2017
- Notification of prizes: 15 December 2017
- Prize distribution: 23 February 2018 at 25th Annual Conference of Indian Association of Palliative Care, Jawaharlal Nehru Auditorium, AIIMS, New Delhi
Rajam S. Nair Endowment
Dr Ajith Nair and his wife Jaya Nair have instituted “Rajam S Nair Endowment” in the sacred memory of their loving mother, the late Rajam S Nair, to improve awareness about the need for palliative care in India.
Rajam Nair was born in Haripad, Kerala in 1947. She died of Leukemia on 01 September 2014. She was an exceptional person with such love and sympathy for her fellow human beings that she always left pleasant memories everywhere she went.
“Death does not scare me,” she used to say. “Pain does. I prefer death to pain.”
Now we hear that production of opium has restarted in Ghazipur factory (but not in Neemuch). The crisis seems to have been averted for the time being. We do not know yet how long it will take for morphine to reach the consumers; we pray and pray that there is no interruption in supply for any person in pain in any institution in India.