2014; Volume 15, No 12, December
Message from the Chair and Executive Director
Welcome to our last issue of this year's Newsletter.
By the end of this year, six board members will be completing their terms. They are: Jim Cleary (USA), Florian Strasser (Switzerland), Eric Krakauer (USA), Bernard Lapointe (Canada), Mhoira Leng (Uganda) and Arthur Lipman (USA). Please join us in thanking each of them for their contributions to IAHPC and their efforts in helping the organization achieve its mission. It has been an honor for us to work with these members of the Board.
During the past months, we sent several announcements for IAHPC affiliates to nominate candidates to these positions and the deadline for nominations was November 30th. The response was enthusiastic and several candidates were nominated. Newly elected or re-elected members will be announced in early January 2015.
As the year ends, we are proud of the things we were able to achieve through our programs and projects, and of the support we were able to provide to developing countries in the accomplishment of our mission. Some examples of activities aimed to improve the adequate care of patients and families around the world, include:
- An IAHPC membership fee schedule based on the Gross National Income of the country where the applicant lives, which starts at $10 per year for individuals living in countries classified as Low by the United Nations.
- Access to IAHPC members to the CINAHL database, with thousands of citations and online journals, including the following palliative care journals:
- Indian Journal of Palliative Care
- International Journal of Palliative Nursing
- Internet Journal of Pain, Symptom Control & Palliative Care
- Journal of Palliative Medicine
- Journal of Pain and Palliative Care Pharmacotherapy
- Palliative Medicine
- Progress in Palliative Care.
- Traveling Scholarships: 45 traveling scholarships to individuals from 17 countries were awarded during 2014. Through this program IAHPC provided financial support to palliative care leaders from developing countries to attend an international palliative care congress, course, seminars or training sessions.
- The celebration of October as the Members’ Recognition Month to build awareness and understanding of the vital function that our members play in the advancement of our mission, as well as to give recognition to our members for their support. Two scholarships to attend the World Congress of the European Association for Palliative Care (EAPC) were awarded in the following categories:
This edition of the NL features the announcement and a brief bio of each winner.
- Recognizing Loyalty: to maintain the loyalty of members by giving a prize to a selected individual or institution that keeps the IAHPC membership active for at least two consecutive years. The winner of this award for 2014 is Dr. Mitsuru Sakitani (MD, PhD), Director of the Institute for Cross-Cultural Communication (ICCC), in Kobe, Japan.
- Increasing Membership: to increase the number of members by giving a prize to the individual who recruits the highest number of new or renewed members during October. The winner of this prize was Josephine Muya, the Administrative Assistant of Kenya Hospices and Palliative Care Association (KEHPCA) in Nairobi, the overarching body that supports all aspects of hospice and palliative care in Kenya.
- Opioid Price Watch project: During 2014, IAHPC announced the results of phase I of Opioid Price Watch (OPW), a project to monitor and report the dispensing price of opioids around the world. This project is as a component of the agreement of work as an NGO in formal relations with the World Health Organization (WHO). The project was funded with a seed grant from the US Cancer Pain Relief Committee. A report on the pilot, published in the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, presents data on availability, dispensing prices and affordability submitted by 30 participants from 26 countries. Using the results from the pilot, the IAHPC has also created an interactive map, highlighting the different prices of opioids around the world.
- Atlas of Palliative Care in Latin America of the Latin American Association for Palliative Care: After two and half years the ALCP completed the cartographic edition of the Atlas of Palliative Care in the Region. IAHPC was one of the partners in this project and the reports are published online under the IAHPC Press brand. This is the first report of the status of palliative care in Latin America based on a systematic review and structured survey. The reports are available in the ALCP website.
- World Health Assembly Palliative Care Resolution. IAHPC joined forces with other organizations to work and support the adoption of a Palliative Care Resolution, adopted in Geneva in May 2014. This is the first-ever resolution calling for the integration of hospice and palliative care into national health services and reflects growing awareness of the unaddressed palliative care needs for the millions of people worldwide with life-limiting conditions. The resolution outlines clear recommendations to improve access and availability of palliative care. These include ensuring palliative care is included in all national health policies and budgets, and in the curricula for health professionals. It also highlights the critical need for countries to ensure that there is an adequate supply of all essential palliative care medicines for appropriate pain control for adults and children.
- ALCP Palliative Care Indicators: IAHPC worked together with the Latin American Association for Palliative Care (ALCP) developing indicators to monitor palliative care at the macro (country) level. A report has been published which includes the indicators and recommendations on their implementation.
Last but not least, three new individuals joined IAHPC during 2014: Avril Jackson as the Senior Editor of the IAHPC Newsletter, Dr. Katherine Pettus as the IAHPC Advocacy Officer and Ms Julia Libreros as Coordinator of Directory Services. We are very happy to have them as members of the IAHPC family and look forward to exciting times ahead.
We could not have been able to achieve the above without the generous support of our board of directors, our members, donors, foundations and organizations. We are especially grateful to the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Fund, the Open Society Foundations, the International Leadership Program at San Diego Hospice and the US Cancer Pain Relief Committee for their support.
All our donors and supporters believe in IAHPC’s mission and in our goal to have an impact on the promotion and development of palliative care. Our ability to continue to help others depends heavily on the support we receive from all, so please consider donating to IAHPC. You can donate through our website.
We face many challenges in the near future, especially in the light of the current global economic situation. We are aware that we face financial constraints and have prepared ourselves to meet these challenges. Our strong commitment to supporting the development of palliative care around the world will continue to be our driving force. We wish to thank all those who make our work worthwhile – the patients and their families, the healthcare workers, and the volunteers who dedicate and give so much to palliative care.
Best wishes to all of you, your friends and family members, for the coming holidays and we hope that next year will bring happiness and success. May your dreams come true.
Until next month,
Lukas Radbruch, MD
Chair, Board of Directors
Liliana De Lima, MHA
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