Message from the Chair and Executive Director

2015; Volume 16, No 7, July

Message from the Chair and Executive Director

Dear readers,

We are very happy to announce some great news for palliative care from around the globe!

The Americas become the first region in the world to have an instrument for the promotion and protection of the rights of older persons! The Convention includes access to palliative care and to treatment for pain! Last month the member states of the Organization of American States (OAS) approved the Inter-American Convention on Protecting the Human Rights of Older Persons. This is great news! The purpose of the Convention – the first regional instrument of its kind in the world – is to promote, protect and ensure the recognition and the full enjoyment and exercise, on an equal basis, of all human rights and fundamental freedoms of older persons, in order to contribute to their full inclusion, integration and participation in society. It is also the first ever regional instrument that explicitly includes palliative care in several sections, including access to palliative care treatment and care, access to medicines across the globe and research to improve the quality of care including palliative care for older people. The Convention can be downloaded from the OAS website. Well done OAS!

IAHPC has partnered with the All Ireland Institute for Hospice and Palliative Care (AIIHPC) to support the participation of individuals from developing countries to attend the AIIHPC Global Colloquium on Palliative Care, which will be held in Dublin Castle, Dublin, on October 14-15, 2015. The purpose of the AIIHPC Colloquium is to gather an assembly of national level policy and clinical experts from across the world to explore globally important palliative care topics through the presentation of plenary papers, discussion and debate. It will also provide a context for purposeful discussion of the recent World Health Assembly resolution (WHA67.19) to integrate hospice and palliative care services into national health services. This will be achieved through engaged discussion to help shape palliative care policy for the future. Thanks to this partnership, we have been able to provide scholarships to 18 individuals from 14 developing countries to attend the Colloquium. They are: Jane Bates (Malawi), Sushma Bhatnagar (India), Claudia Burla (Brazil), Julia Downing (Uganda), Maria Mercedes Fajardo (Colombia), Eduardo Garcia Yanneo (Uruguay), Omar Gomezese (Colombia), Coumba Gueye (Senegal), Elizabeth Gwyther (South Africa), Haroon Hafeez (Pakistan), Mhoira Leng (Uganda), Anne Merriman (Uganda), Mati Nejmi (Morocco), MR Rajagopal (India), Isaias Salas Herrera (Costa Rica), Dingle Spence (Jamaica), Bernardo Villa Cornejo (Mexico) and Jonah N. Wefuan (Cameroon). Congratulations to the grantees and we look forward to meeting them in person in Dublin next October as well as to their participation in the discussions during the Colloquium.

We recently announced free membership to undergraduate college/university students of any discipline! This newsletter includes a copy of the announcement and the link to the application. Please share with your colleagues, students and friends. It’s a wonderful opportunity for students who wish to learn more and engage in global palliative care.

Last month it was also announced that a new network – Palliative Care in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies (PALCHE) – has been developed to address Palliative Care in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies (CHEs). PALCHE is an informal network housed within IAHPC and under the leadership of Joan Marston. The announcement and how you can become involved was published in ehospice. Congratulations to Joan Marston and the rest of the group for raising awareness about the palliative care needs of individuals in humanitarian situations. We look forward to future collaboration with other NGOs and individuals interested in this field.

And some great news from Argentina: Dr. Graciela Jacob, an IAHPC member and palliative care physician and past president of the Argentinian Association for Palliative Care, has been designated as the new Director of the National Cancer Institute. Congratulations to Dr. Jacob – this is well-deserved recognition for her efforts in the advancement of palliative care in Argentina and for her contribution – along with the IAHPC Past Chair, Dr. Roberto Wenk – in the development of a strategy to improve access to medicines for patients with palliative care needs. In addition to recognizing the leadership of Dr. Jacob, this designation is also recognition of the importance of palliative care as a component of the cancer control strategy for the country! Read the announcement in the local newspaper here.

This is all great news – congratulations to the individuals and organizations making it all possible.

Until next month,

Lukas Radbruch, MD
Chair

Liliana De Lima, MHA
Executive Director


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