Palliative care is a method dedicated to improving the well-being of individuals, including adults and children, and their families facing challenges associated with life-threatening illnesses. Its focus is on promptly recognizing, accurately assessing, and addressing physical, psychosocial, or spiritual factors to alleviate and prevent suffering. In 2020, the World Health Organization estimated that 56.8 million individuals, including 25.7 million in their final year, required palliative care annually, with only around 14% accessing it globally. Unfortunately, approximately 18 million people endure pain and suffering during their deaths each year due to limited access to palliative care and pain relief.
Recognizing the significance of providing access to palliative care and alleviating both physical and psychosocial suffering is increasingly acknowledged as a vital component of humanitarian response. Although various organizations and initiatives have aimed to establish guidance and policies for integrating palliative care, its feasibility is questioned, especially in crisis situations where caring for individuals with life-threatening conditions presents logistical, legal, and ethical challenges.
World Hospice and Palliative Care Day (WHPCD) is an annual event dedicated to advocating for hospice and palliative care, emphasizing an interdisciplinary approach to enhance the quality of life and alleviate suffering for individuals with serious illnesses and their caregivers. As an active advocate for palliative care in humanitarian aid and emergency settings, PallCHASE is excited to collaborate with the International Children’s Palliative Care Network (ICPCN) and the International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care (IAHPC) to organize and promote WHPCD.
The goal is to involve governments and stakeholders in a health-focused approach to palliative care, fostering unity among community members throughout their lifespan. Celebrating its 19th year, the upcoming event on October 14 urges participation to promote better global hospice and palliative care services. The 2023 theme, “Compassionate Communities: Together for Palliative Care” highlights the importance of compassion in recognizing and actively addressing the suffering of others.
Compassionate communities, grounded in a health promotion approach to palliative care, aim to educate and provide information for health, well-being, and care throughout the patient’s journey.
This globally recognized approach mobilizes local networks to enhance the end-of-life experience by fostering awareness and support. These communities, leveraging naturally occurring supportive networks, address the complex needs of patients and their families, offering hands-on care while considering various domains like symptom control, social environment, psychological distress, and spiritual care.
Unite with us in celebration of World Hospice and Palliative Care Day— a crucial occasion to increase awareness and garner support for palliative care from communities and governments across the globe.
This year we are sharing projects in Bangladesh, Gaza, Ukraine, and online training projects in Lesotho.