“I’ve seen first-hand how palliative care in India is compromised by privatisation”
In an article published in the Guardian, Hannah continues, “I looked after a young man with multiple myeloma, paralysis and the worst bedsore I have ever seen eroding through his left buttock to the bone. When I first met him he was smiley with a gentle manner and few complaints. Over a month his physical condition and spirit declined. When he developed a severe infection, his wife was the one to say ‘I think he is dying’. She was right, and a plan was made to withhold antibiotic and continue symptomatic treatment. The next morning I found he had been admitted to intensive care overnight. He had had a central line inserted, was hooked up to monitoring with pumps delivering expensive antibiotics and medication to maintain his blood pressure. He was no longer able to communicate, semi-conscious and distressed. His family was only allowed to visit for a few hours each day. Despite my best efforts the treatment continued until he died a week later”.
We hope the medical system in India will see the writing on the wall. There are many injustices; we need to focus on some in our advocacy. Every year, there are more voices raised against the social evil of torturing patients and families at end of life. This unethical practice has to stop.