We had tea and talked about death
The 24th of August 2013 happened to be the 9th death anniversary of Dr Elisabeth Kubler Ross (EKR), guru to all palliative care workers and psychiatrists in the world. The EKR foundation (www.ekrfoundation.org) promoted events all over the world; the program was titled, “Let us have dinner and talk about death”.
On this day, Pallium India organized a public interaction forum at the historic Kanakakunnu (Golden hill) palace in Trivandrum, Kerala, discussing the current tendency towards over-medicalization of death, causing great physical, emotional and financial suffering. Social luminaries including Dr Babu Paul IAS, Mr Biju Prabhakar IAS (moderator), Writer Mrs Usha S Nair, Journalist Sri M G Radhakrishnan, Film director Sri Rajiv Nath and Advocate Krishnappan Nair led the discussion after the chairman of Pallium India had introduced the subject. The hall which could accommodate about 150 people, was full.
It struck us as most significant how eager people were to talk about the subject. The newspapers carried the news about the event and calls started coming in, “Is it open to the public?” “Can I bring three friends?” and so on. We had taken with us 100 copies of a “living will” to be shared among those who wanted, thinking that we might have to carry back most of them. We ran out of them before we knew what was happening!
We are by no means done with the subject. Thank you EKR foundation, for your leadership.