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.

ICMR and end-of-life care law

2017 August 8

You may remember that in 2016, government of India put up on its website the draft of an end of life care law. A major problem that we all identified in the draft law was the confusion over meaning of terms, particularly euthanasia being confused with withholding or withdrawing artificial life support.

During the last International conference of medical ethics at Pune, we requested Dr Soumya Viswanathan, the President of ICMR, to come out with official terminology and definitions on the subject. Obviously realizing the importance of the matter, she immediately agreed and entrusted work with Dr Roli Mathur.

A working group created for the purpose with the chairman of Pallium India as the coordinator and stalwarts from the Indian Society of critical care medicine, Indian Academy of neurology and Indian Association of palliative care taking the lead, has created the document which is now on the ICMR website. We must particularly recognize the phenomenal contribution by Dr Naveen Salins who did the lion’s share of the work in creating the draft document.

The document can be seen in http://www.icmr.nic.in/icmrnews/comments_palliative.htm

Link to download PDF: Definitions of terms used in limitation of treatment and providing palliative care at end of life

Thank you Dr Soumya Viswanathan, Dr Roli Mathur, Dr Raj Mani, Dr Roop Gursahani, Dr Naveen Salins and many others for making this happen. And thank you Karunashraya Hospice for hosting the working group meetings.

50 years of St. Christopher’s Hospice

2017 August 7

Thank you David Oliviere for informing us about this historic event:

“I was invited to the 50th Anniversary service in Southwark Cathedral, London, to celebrate the 50 years of the founding of St Christopher’s Hospice. 50 of us were chosen to carry a candle in the procession marking each of the 50 years and representing a different strand of palliative care. The service ended with 50,000 petals drifting down for each of the patients cared for over the 50 years and a moment to reflect.”

St. Christopher’s Hospice was established in 1967 by Dame Cicely Saunders.

 

Cordova Public School honours Ashla Rani and Babu Abraham

2017 August 7

Cordova Public School Trivandrum, a school with a heart, has already been involved in supporting palliative care. They are now gearing up to more organised activities which were inaugurated at an elegant function on 4th August, 2017.

At the event, the school honoured Ashla Rani, Kerala Youth Commission’s Icon of the year 2017, and Pallium India’s Senior Advocacy Manager Babu Abraham, who has been doing phenomenal work in palliative care awareness.

Best wishes for your activities, students, staff and management of Cordova school, and congratulations, Ashla and Babu.

Deaf to the achievements of the deaf

2017 August 5

On August 1, Times of India reported that though the Indian Deaflympics contingent won five medals at the 2017 Deaflympics held in Samsun, Turkey (July 18th to 30th), there was hardly anyone at the airport to welcome them back with cheers.

Compare that with the milling crowds that welcome back a cricket team after an international victory.

It is easy to blame it all on the sports Ministry or the Sports Authority of India; but we would like to ask, where were we all?

Hubert Humphrey said, “The moral test of a society is how that society treats those who are in the dawn of life…the children; those who are in the twilight of life…the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life…the sick, the needy, and the handicapped.”

Now let us judge ourselves.

Ashla Rani wins Youth Icon award 2017

2017 July 31

“If I had a choice, I would opt to walk again. But it is also true that my life in a wheelchair for the last few years has been more worthwhile than that of the 26 years when I could walk”, said Ashla Rani, addressing a public meeting at Kochi last year.

That “worthwhile work” as volunteer with Pallium India made Ashla one of the winners of Kerala Youth Commission’s Youth Icon award 2017. Ashla has been selected under the category “Social Service”.

Ashla Rani joined Pallium India in 2014 as executive assistant to Pallium India’s Chairman. Currently she also works for Pallium India’s educational support program for children of poor patients, and provides emotional support and counselling to people who are in the throes of depression and loneliness. She also leads a campaign to make Trivandrum city wheelchair friendly.

The youth icon award will be presented to Ashla Rani and the winners of other categories by the Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan at Trivandrum on August 1.

Congratulations, dear Ashla, and thank you for everything you do.

Read Ashla’s story published in ehospice.