We hope that everyone reading this column, their friends, and loved ones, are well and safe.
As the pandemic continues to spread, it is encouraging to see new data that seem to indicate that the real numbers are smaller than the initial projected need of ventilators and ICUs as well as the projected mortality rate when the pandemic began. This may be thanks to a combination of reasons, including physical distancing behaviors, better hand hygiene, and more knowledge about both the disease and effective therapeutic interventions for patients with COVID-19.
However, we know that the pandemic continues to challenge health care systems and institutions. We continue to recognize the important, difficult work of health care workers who provide care to patients around the globe. As in our April newsletter, and on behalf of our Board of Directors, we extend our heartfelt gratitude to all those on the front line, working to improve the well-being of hundreds of thousands of patients.
Last month, we announced that we were working with our sister global palliative care organizations — the International Childrens’ Palliative Care Network (ICPCN), the Palliative Care in Humanitarian Aid Situations and Emergencies network (PalCHASE) and the Worldwide Hospice Palliative Care Alliance (WHPCA) — to develop the global Palliative Care and Covid-19 series, consisting of “Briefing Notes on Palliative Care & COVID-19” and webinars.
At the moment of writing this message, we have completed the web page containing a list of tools and resources to support decision makers, providers, and civil society organizations. The situation is changing rapidly, and recommendations are changing with similar speed, therefore this list only has links to online resources — it does not publish content. This serves two purposes: a link to the resource ensures that if recommendations are updated, readers can access the latest information; and it will help increase traffic to the websites. We will continue to update this list with useful resources and guidance relevant to palliative care as we continue to navigate through this pandemic.
And we have also completed four webinars, featuring experts from around the world, discussing different topics. (See Policy & Advocacy for information on past webinars, and IAHPC News for the topics of upcoming webinars.)
Finally, aware that many of our members may be facing financial challenges, we have implemented a 20% reduction for those who wish to join, renew, or extend their membership. This offer is good until May 30, so take advantage of this opportunity!
Please keep safe, and until next month,
Lukas and Liliana