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.

Call for volunteers

2020 April 2

Here’s your chance to help those worst affected by the lockdown. Pallium India has been supporting those in desperate medical and social need for decades. Currently we are unable to deliver essentials like food and medicines, when our patients need it most.

You can help us continue serving them, all you need is a vehicle, two or four wheeler, and some time once a week. 

Volunteers will be duly trained, their fuel expenses covered and given a certificate for community service. 

Interested candidates from Trivandrum and surrounding areas, please get in touch at: Phone number: 8800179309 e-mail: vijesh@palliumindia.org

With this kind of support, we can overcome anything. Thank you CPMG.

2020 April 2

Postmaster General of Kerala and staff made sure that lockdown or no lockdown, essential medicines and supplies reach us.

Thank you, friends at CPMG for your humanity and compassion. And thank you Dr. C V Prasanth for being a great facilitator.

They are not criminals, see them as patients

2020 April 2

As of this date, there have been two deaths due to Covid 19 in Kerala. And the number of suicides due to alcohol deprivation since the lockdown is six. At least.

While most of us are snugly having a holiday at home, there are many around us in agony. In hell. They include about 600,000 people in Kerala who are alcoholics. Another first for Kerala! We are at the top not only in road traffic accidents and suicides among youth; we have the highest prevalence of alcoholism in the country.

We have comfortably allowed that situation to evolve; the state, that is you and I (we are in a democracy, right?) needed the money from liquor business.

And now that Covid-19 is here, we have pulled the rug from under them. Is there no solution? Our chairman writes about it in the most widely newspaper in India. https://www.manoramaonline.com/news/editorial/2020/03/31/paksham-marupaksham-by-MR-Rajagopal-on-Liquor-availibility-in-Covid-days.html

Click here to read the English version of the same article.

Foundation Course at NEIGRIHMS, Shillong

2020 March 31

Rontu Sangma, Regional Co-ordinator-North East India, writes:

I am writing from Guwahati, Assam where we just concluded the “Foundation Course Training on Palliative Care” at North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences (NEIGRIHMS) at Shillong, a beautiful small town with pleasant weather. The training was organised by the State NPPC (National Programme for Palliative Care), Meghalaya in collaboration with the Palliative Care Unit (NEIGRIHMS) and Pallium India from 9-13 March 2020. The dignitaries present were Shri. S. Kumar (IAS), Commissioner & Secretary, Health and Family Welfare and Dr. (Mrs.) M.Marbaniang, State Nodal Officer, NPPC, Meghalaya and Dr.DM Thappa, Director-NEIGRIHMS, Shillong.

Dr P Bhattacharyya, Registrar and HoD, Department of Anaesthesiology & Palliative Care Incharge, NEIGRIHMS, gave the introductory remark. Pallium India was represented at the training by Dr Charu Singh, a palliative care expert and Mr. Rontu Sangma, regional coordinator in the north east.

The training was attended by 46 participants who came from different parts of the state. Trainee cohort comprised doctors, nurses and health officers. Most of the participants reported that the foundation course was their formal introduction to palliative care. Dr Prithwis and Dr Charu ensured that the participants were sensitised to the basics before delving deep into details. The expert faculty had designed the curriculum carefully to address the training needs of participants who were from varying educational background. Training sessions ranged from understanding and evaluating suffering to communication and clinical and psycho-social management.

Palliative care transcends the conventional symptom management approach in medicine to holistically address the suffering of the patient and family. This requires the health worker to spend quality time with them. Communication, compassion and touch are equally important as pharmacological management. Keeping this in mind, the training was designed to be interactive and participatory. Case studies presented were well received with full participation. Movies like ‘The Wit’ and ‘50:50’ that showcased the need for palliative care and the society’s response kept the participants glued to their seat. Emphasis was given on leadership training as palliative care is often a team work between medical professionals, community and family members.

Thinking back, I marvel at the vision and commitment of organizers and faculty. Training involving government employees is often confronted with time constraint as the in service staff cannot be kept away from their duty for long. However, the training was designed and meticulously delivered such that the trainees could practice what they learnt in their daily work and continue to be mentored. I could also see how the concept of reflective thinking emboldened the participants to open up and share their personal experiences. All the participants expressed their commitment to do their bit to alleviate health related suffering from the society.

It makes me immensely happy that the participants have requested for another training. This has been one of the best training sessions I have attended so far. I am optimistic that this initiative under the leadership of Dr. Prithwis and Dr Charu supported by the state, NEIGRIHMS and Pallium India will bring about a sea change in the access and delivery of palliative care in Meghalaya and north east in the coming days.

We need your help to battle COVID-19

2020 March 30

Since the outbreak, we at Pallium India have prioritized responding to this pandemic over all other activities.

Our home care teams along with 12 Social Workers (some of whom worked with us years ago and have now stepped forward in an amazing show of solidarity) are triaging all our existing 1350 unique patients, who make up the most vulnerable cohort in this crisis – the ailing, the alone, the elderly and the impoverished.

Teams were deployed to deliver rations and medicines for the forthcoming weeks to all our beneficiaries. At the cusp of implementation, the nation was put under a 3-week lockdown. We didn’t have the luxury of stopping work; we pivoted and stepped it up.

In the coming days, we will leverage technology to monitor all of them, and take on others who need our care. We are setting up a helpline for clinical and emotional support. Teams are on standby to reach those who may require on-site symptom control or need to be brought into our facility for appropriate end of life care. This is for our patients who already have advanced serious illnesses and may not be able to access healthcare facilities at this time due to the lockdown.

We commit ourselves to the highest standards of safety while delivering care.

A task force comprising of two doctors, a public health specialist, a community outreach coordinator, a physiotherapist, a psychologist and a tech expert are leading the charge from within our organisation. Guided and advised by experts, they are keeping up with the latest advisories, guidelines and information – distilling what is most relevant, to create appropriate strategies and rapidly implement them.

Our Chairman is part of an advisory group for the government of Kerala, and is constantly in touch with them.

We’re documenting our processes and systems to let others readily replicate. Most importantly, we’re planning beyond prevention – to management and bereavement.

No one accurately knows how bad this will get, but we do know that Pallium India is committed to providing optimum support to communities, care providers, the healthcare system and government.

We are building on our expertise and network and are privileged to have a dedicated group of health care workers who, in spite of much anxiety about their own families, are stepping forward, showing up and carrying on.

In the face of unprecedented challenges, lack of timely resources can be crippling. Any contribution you make to our COVID-19 response fund will help us do more and do better.

 

For people within India, please use these bank account details:

Account Name: Pallium India Trust
Bank Name: Canara Bank
Account Number: 5114101001046
IFS Code: CNRB0005114
Branch: Perunthanni, Thiruvananthapuram

For Overseas donations, please use this account:

Account Name: Pallium India Trust
Bank Name: Dhanalakshmi Bank
Account Number: 003700900000036
Branch: Vazhuthacaud
IFS Code: DLXB0000037
Swift Code: DLXBINBBXXX

You can also contribute on – https://palliumindia.org/donate/