Representing Best Practices in Community-Based Palliative care at the G20 Summit
Pallium India had the privilege to be invited to the C20 (Civil Society 20) engagement group of the G20 in April. We were invited to present our work as part of 20 “Udaharans” or Best Practices by Civil Society organisations in the country.
In addition, we were part of the working group for Elderly Care and End of Life Care, and were amongst those that contributed towards the development of various draft policies on these subjects as well as strategies for fund generation for palliative care. These are tasks in progress, and will be taken up for further deliberation. Once finalised, the overarching policy recommendation will be presented by the representatives of the government to the G20 members.
The G20 (Group of Twenty) is an international forum established in 1999, that brings together the world’s major economies, representing both developed and developing countries. The group includes 19 countries plus the European Union. The primary objective of the G20 is to promote international economic cooperation and ensure global economic stability. First established as a forum for finance ministers and central bank governors of the world’s leading economies, it has evolved into a broader platform for international economic coordination, with leaders of member countries meeting annually to discuss a range of issues affecting the global economy.
The C20 is a group of civil society organizations that ensure that the perspectives and priorities of civil society are taken into account in the G20’s decision-making processes, through consultations, policy briefs, and advocacy campaigns. The C20 is an important platform for civil society to voice their concerns and provide recommendations on issues like poverty reduction, social inclusion, gender equality, climate change, sustainable development, and human rights.
The G20 recognizes the important role of civil society in shaping policies that affect people’s lives, and in turn the C20, works to ensure that the G20 is accountable to the people it serves and that its policies are inclusive and responsive to the needs of all members of society.
The G20 summit is held annually under the a rotating Presidency model, and India holds the leadership for the year 2023. The theme which India has chosen for the year 2023 is ‘Vasudaiva Kutumbakam’, meaning “One Earth. One Family. One Future.”
Though articulated differently, this inclusive approach has always been the guiding principle of palliative care services provided by Pallium India for the last 2 decades. Under the Sustainable Development Goals for Universal Health coverage is the tenet of “Health for all is health with all” – underscoring the fact that competent, affordable and accessible healthcare can only be effectively designed and delivered with the involvement of the very people it serves. The now famous ‘Neighbourhood Networks in Palliative Care’ which was established in Kerala is a prime example of how this can be done.
Sharing the stage with other Udaharans in India was both humbling and eye-opening. There is tremendous work being spearheaded by organisations large and small across the country, and platforms like these make them visible, and allow us to learn from one another. As our engagement with C20 continues, so does our learning about the dynamic, diverse and innovative ways in which people from all walks of life can come together to bring social change in meaningful ways. Truly, there can be unity and beauty in diversity.
(Prepared by Dr. Deepak Sudhakaran and Smriti Rana)