Pain Relief as a Human Right?
Should it not be?
This was one of the major points discussed during a meeting organized by the International Federation of Health and Human Rights Organisations (IFHHRO) in Amsterdam on 20-21 January 2011, with support from the Open Society Foundations.
Taking part were World leaders from Human Rights Organisations:
- Dr Adriaan van Es – President, IFHHRO
- Professor Cees Flinterman – Member, UN Human Rights Committee
- Diederik Lohman – Human Rights Watch
and from the Pain and Palliative Care field:
- Dr Kathleen Foley – Memorial Sloane Kettering Institute
- Mary Callaway – Open Society Foundations [“Health Care Without the Pain”]
- Dr Liliana De Lima – IAHPC
- Dr Michael Cousins – IASP
How much of access to pain relief and palliative care can be considered a basic right in the developing world? It would be no use bringing in unrealistic norms which cannot be achieved!
The group unanimously agreed that while the degree of care would be dependent on availability of resources, there would be some minimum standards that any country can and should provide. Like immediate release oral morphine.
The group worked on the draft of a declaration, that should take final shape in the next few weeks.