Petitioning Mission Director, National Health Mission, Gov of Uttarakhand, Health & Family Welfare Society Dr Neeraj Khairwal and 1 other

Let’s Stop Suffering at the End of Life!

Imagine you been diagnosed with an advanced debilitating disease. The doctors say they can do no more.  Who will ensure that your pain and other distressing symptoms are relieved? Will you receive the kind of health care you want and deserve?  At present, you and the majority of such Indian patients most likely will not.

We, the undersigned, request that all citizens of Uttarakhand receive quality health care at the end of our lives which includes good pain relief and focuses on improving quality of life when the disease is advanced. This is palliative care and is recognised internationally as a basic human right. 

Every year thousands of people die in Uttarakhand from cancer and other distressing illnesses. For many of those, the end of their lives are filled with pain, anxiety and financial hardship. Regardless of social standing, both patients and families are    affected; it could and does happen to any of us. Instead of good pain relief, control of symptoms and a dignified death, people are frequently either turned away from hospitals or admitted to intensive care units for treatments which only prolong the suffering.  Such patients deserve palliative care, the medical specialty which cares for those with advanced incurable illness. This care strives to ensure the physical, social,  emotional and spiritual needs of the patient are met as well as providing support to their families.

Sadly, most doctors and nurses in India do not receive training in palliative care and  are not equipped to meet the needs of the terminally ill patient. This is reflected in the low ranking position of India in the recent ‘Quality of Death Index’.

 

 

In 2015, India ranked at 67 out of 80 countries, a shameful figure given the high standing India has in other aspects of medical care and frightening for any of us facing death in India. 

Through the development of a palliative care policy for Uttarakhand, the people of our state will receive the quality of care they deserve at the end of their lives. In particular, the policy must ensure:  

  • Training of health care professionals in palliative care in order that those with advanced, incurable, burdensome conditions will be treated according to their needs.
  • Necessary medicines such as morphine, a strong pain medicine will be available if required to prevent those suffering from severe pain die an agonising death.
  • The dying are supported either at home, in hospital or in a hospice / palliative care unit allowing patients to die in a dignified manner according to their wishes.
  • Hospitals and community services including NGOs providing palliative care are supported financially to achieve these goals.

“There is nothing more we can do for you” must be replaced by “There is always something we can do!"                                                                   

We are a new state; let us take a lead in such an important issue! 

Unite with us to ensure fear and suffering in death in Uttarakhand is replaced by support and compassion for our vulnerable citizens.

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This petition will be delivered to:
  • Mission Director, National Health Mission, Gov of Uttarakhand, Health & Family Welfare Society
    Dr Neeraj Khairwal
  • Principal Secretary of Health, Gov of Uttarakhand
    Shri Om Prakash

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