March 2013 Newsletter

2013 March 31
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Dear Friends,

photoA great beginning has been made in the Indian Union Territory of Lakshadweep – an archipelago of twelve atolls, three reefs and five submerged banks, with a total of about thirty-nine islands and islets. Ten of the islands are inhabited. Kavaratti is the capital, and on the 27th of March 2013, the first palliative care unit in Lakshadweep was inaugurated there.

The president of the District Panchayat and Chief Councillor, Shri Achada Ahmed Haji presided and the Director of Medical Services, Dr Hamsa Koya and the Deputy Director of Health Services, Dr Shamsudeen were active participants in the program – not only in the inaugural function, but in all aspects of the palliative care services.

We thank the International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care for providing the traveling scholarship for Dr Asghar Ali and Mr Mohammed Kafi to travel to Trivandrum to attend our six weeks’ course.

A remarkable pair of committed workers, they have already rolled out a home visit program. They have to do this in addition to their other duties in the District Hospital, but they manage to see 26 patients at home on a regular basis, mounted on Kafi’s motorbike, the doctor as the pillion rider.

The one man whose dream resulted in all this is Mr Moulana. Mr Moulana is more of a social institution than an individual. He has done so much not only for Kavaratti, but for all the islands. He teaches art and craft at the local school, and all his spare time is devoted to social upliftment of his fellow men. He worked hard to get a lot of committed people together, to overcome bureaucratic barriers and to raise resources.

Congratulations, Moulana and colleagues. Pallium India is proud to be your partner in the program.

Prestigious nomination for “A few days more”

An engaging documentary depicting a cancer journey and exploring the field of palliative care, has been nominated for screening at the prestigious Dada Saheb Phalke Film Festival in Noida 2013.

Called “A few days more”, the film was directed by Mr Om Prakash Srivastava and produced by Reelism Films, Mumbai.

Watch online here…

Best wishes Om, and thank you for giving Pallium India the privilege of being a part of the film.Working together for a great cause

Health Care in India – A Perspective

See the article by Dr Rajendra Pratap Gupta to read about the Public Account Committee (PAC)’s report on Indian Health Care scene in “Modern Medicine” – and about the optimism created by India’s new Health Secretary Shri Keshav Desiraju.

Healthcare policies in India: Setting the right priorities

On February 1, 2013, Keshav Desiraju took over as the nation’s Health Secretary. Over the past few years, he has worked in the Union Ministry of Health & Family welfare on various senior positions, like Joint Secretary, Additional Secretary and Special Secretary. Known for his friendly attitude and realistic thinking, expectations are high from him. India is likely to see more action at the Ministry in the next two years. As the nation’s top official who has to look after the policies and programmes for 1.21 billion people, what could be the right priorities ? Is it mother & child health, chronic diseases , rural health… and the list goes on…

Read more here…

Hearty congratulations, Dr Ann Thyle and colleagues

Dr Ann Thyle from Emmanuel Hospital Association writes to give us some good news:

I’m very happy to let you know that the palliative care service at HBM Hospital, Lalitpur, Uttar Pradesh won first prize in the Development category from the International Journal of Palliative Nursing. For details please see the following link: http://emms.org/news/development-award-lalitpur-palliative-care

I’m writing specially to thank each of you for helping us with training, visits, evaluations and mentoring. Everything became so much easier when we had the support of experienced people such as yourselves. Personally, it’s been wonderful for me to have you to refer to as I strive to expand our services across other EHA hospitals. Presently 2 of our hospitals in UP, and 1 each in Maharashtra, Assam and Delhi are running home based care PC services.

Congratulations, Dr Ann Thyle and colleagues.

After Cicely – Asian Women In Palliative Care

What does it mean to say goodbye?
Is it about making a painless departure?
Or encasing the memories for those left behind?
AFTER CICELY explores the meaning of modern hospice and palliative care through the eyes of five inspiring women in Asia. This is a visual journal of how they pave final journeys with empathy, dedication and love.

The Lien foundation gives us a short film After Cicely – Asian Women In Palliative Care, commissioned by the Lien Foundation, featuring five members of APHN from Bangladesh, Mongolia, Singapore, Taiwan and Vietnam.

After Cicely is a documentary film on five inspiring women from Asia, who have spent their lives helping families in pain.

Following the efforts of Cicely Saunders, a British physician who founded the modern hospice movement and emphasized the need for palliative care, these women have braved adversity with tenacity and heart to lift the bleakness of death for the terminally ill. This film is a visual journal of how they pave final journeys with empathy and love.

After Cicely celebrates their indomitable spirit in line with Lien Foundation’s Life Before Death initiative and International Women’s Day.

Please share this with your friends and colleagues.

Welcome to Bhubaneswar in February 2014

Dr Sukdev Nayak, organizing secretary, welcomes you to the historical and picturesque Bhubaneswar (Orissa) for the next Annual Conference of the Indian Association of Palliative Care from 14-16 February 2014.

The theme of the conference will be “Evidence Based Palliative Medicine”.

Please visit http://iapcon2014.in

Focus on pain

Dr Gopakumar, writing on behalf of Trivandrum city branch of Indian Association of Anesthesiologists, invites you to a day’s workshop on Pain on 10 May 2013 at Alumni Auditorium, Trivandrum Medical College.

Pallium India collaborates with ISA on this activity. Dr Roger Goucke from Australia is going to be the visiting faculty member at this workshop.

In addition, the main meeting on the 11th and 12th of May includes pain management issues and end of life care. For more information, please contact isatricon2013@gmail.com

PARTING SHOT

“Thank you for being so welcoming and warm. The organization is even more incredible than I had expected – mostly due to the people, who have such big hearts, dedication, and talent. It really is inspiring to see how much you all do with so little. What a spirited and resourceful group!”

Thus writes Ms Karina Schoultz, a social worker from USA. Karina and Sachin Srinivasan, a student from another part of USA spent several weeks with us in Trivandrum as volunteers, helping us with whatever needed to be done – preparing reports, helping out with grant writing and so on.

Thank you very much for your kind words Karina. And thank you very much for giving us so much of yourself, Karina and Sachin.

We miss you terribly!

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