Grants in Action

2020; Volume 21, No 1, January

Grants in Action

The 2019 IAHPC Lifetime Membership Award went to the Colombian Association of Palliative Care. The $USD2,000 it received was used to help finance a symposium on spirituality held in August 2019. Lea el informe en español.

At the Spirituality Symposium in Colombia: (L-R) Jose Luis Martinez, Colombia; Florencia Galeazzi, Argentina; Juan Pablo Yaeger, Chile; Sandra Liliana Parra, Colombia; Enric Benito Oliver, Spain; Andrea Zuleta, Colombia; IAHPC Research Advisor Tania Pastrana, and Rene Estupiñan, Colombia. Photo used with permission.

Symposium Strengthens Spirituality
in Palliative Care in Latin America

By Dr. Sandra Liliana Parra Cubides
President, Colombian Association of Palliative Care (ACCP)

The Spirituality Symposium

Attendees: 300

Experiential workshop: 60 people

Medical profiles: Palliative care doctors, other specialists, GPs, nurses, psychologists, social workers, spiritual advisors.

Countries represented: Colombia, Peru, Costa Rica, Panama, Ecuador, Brazil, Guatemala.

Cities in represented: Bogotá, Medellín, Bucaramanga, Ríonegro, Fusagasuga, Neiva, Envigado, Ibagué.

Spirituality is a central axis of palliative care, requiring clinical as well as academic attention to highlight and strengthen the spiritual dimension of care. For this reason, the Board of Directors of the Colombian Association of Palliative Care decided to hold an academic event with two components, one theoretical and one experiential, with the aim of understanding spirituality as something tangible that permeates our daily work in palliative care, and to provide tools to assess and respond to the spiritual needs of patients and families.

The symposium, held in the cities of Medellín and Bogotá, featured three international speakers: Dr. Juan Pablo Yaeger from Chile, Dr. Florencia Galeazzi, Psych. from Argentina, and Dr. Enric Benito Oliver, an honorary member of the Spanish Society of Palliative Care (SECPAL) and an expert in spirituality in Latin America. In addition, the symposium included high-level national speakers: Dr. Alicia Krikorian, Dr. Juan Fernando Velasquez, Dr. Sandra Liliana Parra, and Ms. Jose Luis Martinez.

Working theories that
offer concrete help

The theoretical symposium outlined the current situation, taught the use of assessment tools for spiritual distress, and described successful spiritual interventions and self-care for health personnel.

Experiential workshop

In addition, a two-day workshop led by Dr. Enrico Benito built on the personal experience of participants and involved working in groups. Clinical experience and a teaching model developed by the SECPAL spirituality working group (GES) were shared from an integrated, humanistic, professional, and trans-denominational perspective.

Planting a seed

This event planted a seed for spiritual care within palliative care in Latin America; the goal is for it to grow and develop. The large number of attendees from different cities in Colombia, as well as those representing many different facets of the health community, give us hope of achieving more comprehensive care every day for patients with palliative needs.

Learn more about the Asociación Colombiana de Cuidados Paliativos (ACCP), an IAHPC member organization, in the IAHPC Global Directory of Palliative Care Institutions & Organizations.


With her $USD2,000 award, IAHPC’s 2018 Loyalty winner chose to attend the Allied Health Postgraduate Research Conference hosted by the School of Health Sciences at the University of Nottingham, England, in September 2019.

Hana Agustina with her poster presented at a recent research conference. Photo used with permission.

As a Researcher, I Must
Participate More Actively

By Hana Rizmadewi Augustina, Nursing Studies PhD candidate, School of Health Sciences, The University of Nottingham
Bandung, Indonesia

This conference emphasized the importance of improving collaboration between academic institutions, practitioners, and policy makers, particularly those in the field of health care services.

I enjoyed opportunities to gain insights from other scholars about how to improve my personal and professional ability to conduct research. I realized that, as a researcher, I need to more actively participate and intentionally enhance my contributions to the global palliative care and end-of-life-care learning forum. I hope that my research findings will illuminate unmet needs, thereby creating a more structured end-of-life care education for nursing students, particularly in developing countries.

Furthermore, I used the opportunity to expand my professional network to support my future career in my home country. I also shared my knowledge and suggestions about the urgency of improving end-of-life care in current health care education and practice.

Poster: Barriers and Facilitators in the Delivery of Education to Promote Caring for People at the End of Life for Undergraduate Nursing Students.


The 2019 Institutional Award recipient, Galilee Palliative Care Unit, used its $USD2,000 award to offset costs for two employees to make educational visits to Our Ladies Hospice, Dublin. Emmannouil Trapalis went in October; Fotini Deskou will go in 2020.

Providing Quality Services Is
A Powerful Advocacy Tool

By Emmannouil Trapalis, Physiotherapist, Galilee Palliative Care Unit
Spata, Greece

A patient receives treatment at Galilee. Photo used with permission.

Palliative care is quite a new service for Greece and one of the biggest challenges is to raise awareness: to patients in need, health care professionals, the general public and the government. We believe that providing quality services is one of the most powerful tools to raise awareness and achieve advocacy.

At Our Ladies Hospice in Dublin, I had the chance to closely observe the provision of palliative care by all professionals —especially the physiotherapists — in all settings, including care at home as well as at the day center and outpatient hospice, inpatient unit, and long-term facility. I also learned about special equipment they use for physiotherapy.

This helped me improve techniques we use in our palliative care unit for respiratory management and mobilizing patients. I also gained familiarity with new techniques, such as aquatic physiotherapy and ways to treat lymphedema.

How learning is being applied

At Galilee, we plan to create a dedicated space for physiotherapy, using some of the equipment I learned about at the Dublin hospice. Moreover, we will initiate group physiotherapy activities as part of our day center treatments, which will be a new service for our patients.

Our daily practice will introduce some new tools for assessing the needs of patients and mapping the results of the interventions. I will also propose some new components, learned during my visit, for the educational program of our interdisciplinary team.

Learn more about Galilee Palliative Care Unit, an IAHPC member organization, in the IAHPC Global Directory of Palliative Care Institutions & Organizations.


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