International Association for Hospice & Palliative Care

International Association for Hospice & Palliative Care

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Promoting Hospice & Palliative Care Worldwide


2005; Volume 6, No 12, December



Many ways to help support palliative care.

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Message from the Chair & Executive Director:
Kathleen M. Foley, MD
Liliana De Lima, MHA

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Dr. Ripamonti

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Teaching in Cuba

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World Hospice and Palliative Care Day – Brazil, India and an Evaluation

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Roger Woodruff, MD

Regional News – India, Pakistan and Isreal

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World Hospice and Palliative Care Day


Brazil is the largest country in South America with an area of 8.514.215, 3 km², with its capital at Brasilia. It has 170 million inhabitants with a huge geographic and socioeconomic diversity divided into 5 regions, 26 states and 1 Federal District all of them speaking the same language - Portuguese. The World Hospice and Palliative Care Day activities were carried out in some regions of this continental country that lacks an active national program in palliative care. Three of the16 activities in three regions were supported by the kind generosity of International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care (IAHPC). All activities were dedicated to raise awareness and understanding of the needs - medical, social, practical, spiritual - of people living with a terminal diagnosis and their families.

In the southeast, in the city of Sao Paulo, activities focused on general palliative care for the community and were conducted in the largest urban school and cancer hospital in Brazil. It started with a brilliant open lecture to the community, titled “Who needs palliative care?” In the city of Goiania, in the central region of Brazil, a lecture was given for health professionals regarding the importance of palliative care. Finally, in the Northwest region of Brazil, in the city of Fortaleza, a Women’s Network Volunteer Training Program was conducted which had a positive impact on the local media and politicians.

October 8th was a great and significant day in the history of palliative care in Brazil, and its effects are still echoing in the media, medical magazines, journals, and newspapers as well. We are proud to have contributed to a raising of the awareness of the need for hospice and palliative care across the world. We wish to thank IAHPC for the funds to help us accomplish this. This day, definitively changed the palliative care view in this huge continental country. There remains much work to be done in ensuring adequate professional training and access to palliative care in Brazil.

Císio Brandao, MD, Medical Director
Palliative Care Department, Hospital do Cancer A.C. Camargo, Sao Paulo, Brazil.


A Report from CanSupport on the Events it held on Oct. 8, 2005, ‘World Hospice & Palliative Care Day’

The day began with a seminar, supported by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India, and the WHO, at the British Council Auditorium. After a brief but warm welcome from Mr. Les Dangerfield, Deputy Director of the British Council, the Chief Post Master General, Delhi Postal Circle, Mr. S. Samant released a cover especially designed by CanSupport for the occasion. Shri Yoganand Shastri, Minister of Health, Government of the NCT of Delhi, the chief guest, also released a souvenir-journal prepared by CanSupport which carried an encouraging message from the President of India, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. The highlight of the morning was the personal testimony of Mrs. Mohna Venugopalan, a patient being looked after by the CanSupport home care team, who spoke movingly about the difference the home care team had made in her life and that of her husband. She made a stirring plea for policy makers to make palliative care a part of the country’s health agenda and support the development of palliative care services nation wide.

The seminar also featured the screening of a 15 minute film on CanSupport, a panel discussion on palliative care as well as an interactive session with NGOs working in the field of chronic care. Experiences were shared and lessons learned. The suitability of providing care at home in the Indian setting was emphasized as was the need to reach out and offer support to patients and their families through telephone help lines. Fifty-five persons attended the seminar. Of this number, 15 represented institutions and organisations.

In the evening it was time for voices to be raised in unison and harmony as part of the global ‘Voices for Hospices’ concert. CanSupport has participated in this event three previous times. This year’s concert was dedicated to life and it’s many complexities in recognition of the fact that those who receive palliative care are grappling with physical, psychological, social and spiritual aspects of existence. The well known Urdu poet Iqbal’s immortal poem, ‘Zindagi’(‘Life’) set the mood for the evening. After introducing the event, Harmala Gupta, President of CanSupport invited Mr. Fareedu Jaffrey, the brother of a young patient who the home care team had looked after, to come on stage and light a candle. Following this the performance began. Saeed Naqvi, the noted journalist, recited a few choice selections from Urdu poetry in his own inimitable style while Zila Khan, a singer who carries on an illustrious family tradition, sang with great feeling. Both performances were greatly appreciated by a packed house of approximately 500 persons.

It was also an opportunity for CanSupport volunteers to showcase the work CanSupport does and to raise money by selling cards, diaries and T-shirts specially made for the occasion. Their personal warmth and dedication won many a heart that evening as a memorable day came to a close.

For further information contact:
CanSupport at 26102851/59/69
Harmala Gupt

Evaluating the World Hospice and Palliative Care Day

The International Observatory in End of Life Care is conducting a survey to evaluate the World Hospice and Palliative Care Day. The questionnaires are available in different languages and may be filed online through the following links. Please take the time to fill out the questionnaires.

WHPCD evaluation Questionnaire web links:






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