Published on: February 4, 2015

Dr. Nandini Vallath wins the 2015 Cancer Aid Society Palliative Care Award for Excellence and Leadership in the SAARC region for taking away a significant chunk of suffering in our vast country.

Cancer Aid Society is an India-based non-governmental organization working on a variety of areas including palliative care, advocacy, tobacco control, and disease prevention, and holds a special consultative status with the United Nations ECOSOC. The SAARC Palliative Care annual award instituted by the Cancer Aid Society recognizes excellence and leadership in palliative care amongst doctors, paramedics and social workers towards cancer patients from India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.

Dr NandiniThe 2015 winner of the award is Dr. Nandini Vallath, consultant for Trivandrum Institute of Palliative Sciences, a unit of Pallium India, for her outstanding contributions to palliative care through excellence and leadership in clinical practice, advocacy, policy formulation, education and implementation. She collaborated with NGOs and government officials to develop policies that changed the course of palliative care in the country. Her most recent accomplishments include contributions that led to the amendment of the NDPS Act to pave way for facile access to opioid-based pain medication; coordinating an expert team to develop the national policy document for palliative care for India, and developing curricula and course material for medical professionals to integrate pain management and palliative care with mainstream health care. She established the first integrated and holistic palliative care program in India in a corporate setting, at the Bangalore Institute of Oncology, and was instrumental in bringing charitable home-based care services to remote areas near Mysore. Besides these, she has been active in training professionals to start palliative care services in various parts of India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Iran. She represented India at the World Health Assembly in Geneva and delivered a talk on “recent efforts by India on modifying national policies on pain management and palliative care”. Dr.Vallath continues to engage in curriculum development and training activities in collaboration with international experts from India, UK, US and Germany.

Dr. Nandini said, “It is indeed an honour to be recognized. I receive this award on behalf of all my colleagues and mentors. I feel blessed to have had the chance to work with pioneers like Dr. M.R. Rajagopal, Dr. K. Sureshkumar, colleagues such as Dr. Sushma Bhatnagar, Dr. Raji Suresh, Dr. Lulu Matthews, Dr. Salins, lawyers Ms. Tripti Tandon, Mr. Ashok Chitale, and many many government officials who helped navigate restrictive systems to improve healthcare. Continued support from stalwarts worldwide, such as, Mr. David Joranson, Dr. Max Watson, Dr. Jim Cleary and the PPSG team has been invaluable and is much appreciated.”

Dr. Max Watson, director of the Northern Ireland Hospice in Belfast, UK, and editor of the Oxford Handbook of Palliative Care, said, “True recognition for a lot of hard work”. Mr. David Joranson, the founder and distinguished scientist of Pain and Policy Study Group, Wisconsin, USA, said, “Dr. Nandini has made a mark in India that will benefit a lot of patients.”

Congratulations Dr. Nandini, on a very well-deserved award.

5 responses to “Congratulations, Dr Nandini. No one deserves it more!”

  1. Sushli. VP says:

    Congrats has in itself a lot; keep it up!

  2. Prof. Vallath Balakrishnan says:

    Nandini, I have always admired your passion and commitment to palliative medicine and care over the years. You have contributed so much to promote palliative care in our country and in general. I am thrilled to know that you have been selected for the SAARC Award for palliative care this year. Mine as well as Saralammayi’s Best Wishes to you. We are sure that you will, in the coming years, make still greater contributions to this vital area of medicine. Congratulations. Balachettan and saralammayi.

  3. Manoj Kumar Jha says:

    Congratulations Dr.Nandini for getting SAARC Palliative Care Award. I wish all the best and many more feathers in your cap. In fact you deserve it. Congratulations once again.

  4. Swatantra mitta says:

    Congratulations Dr. Nandini for the prestigious award.Hope you can share your experience in our area also. Wish you all the very best .
    Dr Swatantra Mitta

  5. Dr Dipika Patel says:

    Congratulations Dr Nandini for getting SAARC prestigious award for palliative care. Proud of India.Please share your knowledge at your best level so people like us can benefit from it and get inspired.