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Tuesday, Oct 22, 2019

Less than 1% patients in state get palliative care

cities Updated: Oct 10, 2019 22:40 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent

Less than one percent of the patients in need of hospice care are able to get it in Uttar Pradesh as compared to their counterparts internationally where about 10% have access to this care.

“Hospice is needed after all the treatment and care the doctors have given up. Usually, this care is given when a few months are left and the patient is in need of care and pain relief,” said Dr Abhishek Shukla, founder of Aastha Geriatric Hospital and Hospice. He said that the accessibility of care is low globally also but lagging further in our country.

He added, “Lucknow hardly offers hospice to those in need. There is a dire need of hospice as none of the government health establishments provide such care. There are a few pain relief centres in both, the government and private sector.”

“Care givers in such cases are relatives (father or children of the patient) and they often slip into depression as they are unable to give correct care despite making sincere efforts,” said Prof Kauser Usman, HoD geriatric medicine at KGMU.

He said that care givers too have responsibilities and when they find themselves unable to give the required care to the patient they either get irritated or depressed, said Prof Usman. “This is not enough. Proper centres are needed where apart from doctors the nurses, ward boys, physiotherapists, psychologists, palliative care and priests are also involved in spiritual healing,” he adds.

This year’s World Hospice and Palliative Care Day theme is ‘My Care, My Right’ and it aims to communicate that palliative care can be demanded by the public. And that every person impacted by a life limiting illness can influence their policy makers to prioritize palliative care financing.

Trained care givers becomes a responsibility of the policy makers including the medical colleges who may run courses in this branch too, said Dr Raman Kumar, president of the academy of family physicians of India.

“Palliative care is the right of patients,” said Dr Shukla, an expert in geriatric medicine and hospice.


# More than 25.5 million people die every year across the globe with serious health suffering that requires palliative care

# Less than 10% of the overall need for palliative care is being met globally

# More than 80% of these cases belong to low- and middle-income countries

# Number of people who experience serious health-related suffering is much higher, with an additional 35.5 million people requiring some degree of palliative care

First Published: Oct 10, 2019 22:40 IST

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