Newsletter: October 2021 Edition
From the President’s Desk
It is a moment of pride and collective victory for the Indian palliative care community, as we jointly surpass another milestone, to offer DNB Palliative Medicine, in five Institutions across the country. This historic approval couldn’t have come at a better time as we join the world in celebrating the World Hospice and Palliative Care Day (WHPCD) on 9th October, 2021. Two centers from New Delhi (Max Super Specialty Hospital, Saket, New Delhi and the Sri Gangaram Hospital, New Delhi), two centers from Hyderabad (MNJ Institute of Oncology, Hyderabad and the Indo American Cancer Institute and Research Centre, Hyderabad) and The Aster CMI Hospital from Bengaluru, are now eligible to offer DNB in Palliative Medicine from 2021-2022. I congratulate Dr Gayatri Palat, Dr Praneet, Dr Gaurav, Dr Bimla, Dr Sood and Dr Raghavendra R, and their team members for their efforts in initiating this course in their Institutes. I promise you that we will be with you for the successful conduct of this program. I wish to also extend my heartfelt thanks to each of you who has contributed towards this achievement. My sincere gratitude to Dr Lal, Prof. Guleria, and Prof. Nikhil Tandon, and to all the other officials at the National Board of Examinations, for their untiring efforts in getting this program approved.
Our observance of the WHPCD theme ‘Leave no one behind- equity in access to Palliative Care’, couldn’t have been better as the Homi Bhabha Cancer Hospital and Research Centre (HBCHRC), Vizag, and the Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, have also been recognised as ESMO Designated Centres for Integrated Oncology and Palliative Care. Congratulations to both the teams!
Don’t miss reading the Awards and Recognition section of this Newsletter to get a glimpse of the other successes and recognitions achieved by our friends and colleagues.
Dr Anjum Joad and team are bubbling with energy as we inch closer to IAPCON 2022. Do register before 31st October 2021, to avail the early bird registration offer. I invite you to continue reading this newsletter for further updates regarding the conference.
I would like to also remind you that of the IAPC’s Annual General Body Meeting will be held virtually on 12th November 2021, between 6 p.m. and 8.p.m. Please visit the IAPC website for further details regarding this.
We, at the IAPC are working on a very important project, a State wise update of the current status of palliative care services in India. This information will be launched on 9th October, 2021, to commemorate the World Hospice and Palliative Care Day. I must acknowledge the immense support and cooperation provided by the pioneers and the leaders in Palliative Care from each of the State towards helping us compile this very important information. I would not be wrong in saying that this project wouldn’t have been possible without their help and support.
We are also happy to announce that we have received over 20 videos in response to our call for videos to celebrate our palliative care providers from across India, all the way from Kashmir to Kumbakonam. This IAPC-WHPCD video that celebrates our heros will be released soon.
A lot more has also happening in the field of education and training, which are detailed in this Newsletter. The palliative care community was extremely delighted to have Dr Eduardo Bruera deliver a lecture on ‘Integration of Palliative Medicine: What is the science behind it and how it improves quality of life’ during the month. On behalf of IAPC Academy, I would like to thank him for accepting our invitation and for sharing his time and expertise with us during his lecture.
I hope that you have been reading our special feature on Pediatric Palliative Care in the August edition of our newsletter along with the special feature on Geriatric Palliative Care and special feature on Palliative Care for LGBTI community in the September edition of our newsletter. If not, I invite you to please read the same. The three month special series will be culminate on 9th October, 2021, with an exclusive report featuring an update of Palliative Care services from each State in our country.
Don’t forget to share with us, a brief report and a few photographs from your WHPCD celebrations. The details can be emailed to us as firstname.lastname@example.org.
Let’s join hands and celebrate the day of Hospice and Palliative Care!
Dr Sushma Bhatnagar
IAPC’s Special Feature for the World Hospice and Palliative Care Day
We are excited to inform you that the IAPC has drawn on the theme of this year’s World Hospice and Palliative Care Day (WHPCD) ‘Leave no-one behind – equity in access to palliative care’, to put together a special feature with an update of the status of palliative care services from every state across the country.
The idea of this special feature is to generate awareness and facilitate a cross fertilisation of ideas on how palliative care is being delivered in different parts of the country, to encourage networking and collaborations to improve the overall momentum for palliative care across the country. With this feature, we also wish to draw your attention towards the inadequate integration of PC within the healthcare system and the subsequent inequity in access to PC.
This humble effort of the IAPC, with immense support and cooperation from all the contributors will be launched on 9th October, 2021.
Education and Training
Sixty volunteers successfully trained at Dibrugarh, Assam
60 volunteers of Pratishruti Cancer and Palliative Trust, have successfully completed the 16 hour volunteer training program organised by the Pratishruti Cancer and Palliative Trust under the aegis of the Indian Association of Palliative care.
The training was offered as a hybrid model. A two day online session was held on the 4th and 5th of September, 2021, and introduced the course participants to the key concepts in palliative care, while the full day physical session held in Dibrugarh on 17th September, 2021, facilitated participants to focus on practical issues such as nursing care, communication, how to provide basic psychological support etc.
It was a privilege that Mr. Biswajit Phukan, Additional Deputy Commissioner (Health) and Represented Deputy Commissioner, Dibrugarh, graced the occasion as Chief Guest. Other eminent dignitaries included Prof. Alak Kumar Buragohain, President, Pratishruti Cancer and Palliative Trust, Drs. Pranay Phukan and Reeta Bora Phukan from Assam Medical College and Hospital (AMCH) and the well renowned Dr. Prabin Kumar Thakur.
The program was led by Dr Gayatri Gogoi as Organizing Chair, Dr G S Borgohain as Organizing Secretary and Dr KV Ganpathy as Course Chair.
Hurry and register for the workshop on Psychosocial care in chronic illness (non oncology)
The IAPC’s online workshop on the Psychosocial Aspects of providing care to patients with Non-Oncological Conditions in a Palliative Care setting will be launched with a new Batch starting on Saturday, 9th October, 2021, on the occasion of the World Hospice and Palliative Care Day.
The Doctors, Nurses, Counsellors and Social Workers who have enrolled for the program will have an opportunity to understand the psychosocial and spiritual issues, and the coping mechanisms impacting the quality of life of the patients and the care givers in palliative care settings.
The virtual course will be delivered over the weekends of 9th, 10th, 16th, 17th and 23rd of October 2021, as half day sessions between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Please click here to know more details about this course.
Hurry now, and grab the last few seats available before 5th September!
CCEPC Course exam update
The IAPC’s basic course in palliative care, the Certificate Course in Essentials of Palliative Care concluded successfully in August 2021. We had a record 435 participants register for the 3rd online batch of the program.
288 Doctors and 97 Nurses from across the country attended the online examination on 25th September, 2021.
We, at the IAPC, have been privileged to have had the TCS ion develop and gift us this online examination platform. We wish to highlight that the team from TCS continued to partner with us and extend support throughout the examination period to address any queries or offer technical assistance as and when needed, despite it being a weekend. Thank you TCS!
The results from the examination will be announced shortly.
Update from IAPC ACADEMY
Report on activities in September
The palliative care fraternity from across the country and beyond, continued to participate in the weekly IAPC Academy webinars, held every Monday between 6:30 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. The webinars of the IAPC Academy Lecture Series 3 were witnessed by an average of 100 participants per session.
The first lecture in the month ‘Vascular Emergencies 2: Cancer Associated Arterial Bleeding, Carotid and Femoral blow out, Thrombocytopenia and Coagulopathy’ was delivered, in an excellent and crisp manner by Dr Neha Singh. The following week, Dr Bhanu Pratap Maurya delivered an informative session on ‘Vascular Emergencies 3: Superior Venacaval Obstruction, Mesenteric Ischemia, Cancer Associated Arterial Thrombosis’. The Indian palliative care community were treated to a fabulous and a very thought provoking presentation by the very eminent and accomplished Dr Eduardo Bruera during the third week of the month. Dr Bruera’s articulated lecture on ‘Integration of Palliative Medicine: What is the science behind it and how it improves quality of life’ was very interactive and kept the audience engaged throughout the session. The sessions for the month concluded with Dr Vivek Gupta’s enlightening session on ‘Respiratory Emergencies 1: Acute Pulmonary Embolism, Diffuse Alveolar Haemorrhage, Differentiation Syndrome’.
Our palliative care community has been enriched due to the learnings from all the faculties. We sincerely thank all our faculty for sharing their time and expertise with us during these lectures.
Please click here to access recordings of their sessions.
Sessions planned for October
We invite your continued and enthusiastic participation for all the upcoming sessions in October 2021.
Awards and Recognitions
Five Institutes recognised to offer DNB in Palliative Medicine
It is with immense happiness and pride that we announce the recognition of 5 new institutes to offer DNB in Palliative Medicine, in India. The newly recognised institutes are Max Saket Hospital, New Delhi, the Ganga Ram Hospital, New Delhi, The Indo American Cancer Centre, Hyderabad, the MNJ Institute of Oncology, Hyderabad and Aster CMI Hospital, Bengaluru.
The National Board of Examination (NBE) approved the Diplomate in National Board (DNB) Palliative Medicine program in December 2020. Any MBBS graduate who has qualified the NBE’s entrance examination and has fulfilled the eligibility criteria for admission to DNB broad specialty courses at various NBE accredited medical Colleges/institutions/hospitals in India, is eligible to participate in the centralized counseling for allocation of DNB Palliative Medicine seats purely on merit cum choice basis. The 3 year DNB Palliative Medicine training program’s goal is to create an opportunity for specialist palliative medicine training in India and to augment and bridge the need for specialist palliative medicine workforce in India.
On this momentous occasion, Dr Sushma Bhatnagar, President, IAPC said, “Congratulations to everyone!! Let us now collectively work hard to make robust and uniform plans to maintain and ensure the highest standards from Day 1”.
We wish the best as we extend our congratulations to all these 5 institutes!
Two more palliative care centers receive ESMO Accreditation
We are extremely delighted to announce that the Homi Bhabha Cancer Hospital and Research Centre (HBCHRC), Vizag, and the Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, have been recognised as ESMO Designated Centres for Integrated Oncology and Palliative Care.
The European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) centers Accreditation program recognises cancer centres that provide highly integrated oncology and palliative care services with the goal of improving research, education and clinical practice by setting standards for service development.
India now has a total of 14 ESMO designated centers, which is a step in the right direction!
Hearty congratulations to both the newly accredited organisations! We hope you continue to inspire others to join the league of ESMO accredited centers.
Life Care Foundation awarded the Rajiv Gandhi Health Service Award, 2021!
The Rajiv Gandhi Health Service Award 2021, instituted by the United Democratic Front, was awarded to Life Care Foundation, in recognition of their outstanding contributions in social service especially for the 24 hours Life Care Emergency Palliative Home Care services during the covid pandemic period.
Ms Sanitha Rahim, Member of the Ernakulam District Panchayat, presented the award to Mr Mujeeb Kuttamassery, Chairman, who received it on behalf of Life Care Foundation.
CPPC inaugurates ‘ABHAYAM’, its second hospice in Chennai
Abhayam, a new hospice center and a unit of Chennai Pain and Palliative Care (CPPC) was inaugurated by Padmashree Padma Bhushan Dr Kamala Haasan, in Villivakkam, Chennai on 19th September, 2021.
The 20 bedded, not-for-profit hospice will provide both Inpatient and home care facilities, free-of-charge for terminally ill patients.
On this momentous occasion, Mr P Prakash, General Secretary, Chennai Pain and Palliative Care Centre, shared that “Palliative care for terminally ill patients is yet to catch up in Tamil Nadu”.
CPPC began providing palliative care services in Chennai since November 2014, and has rendered free palliative care for over 4,000 patients till date.
Mr. Mujeeb Kuttamassery, South Zone, Central Council Member, IAPC, was also felicitated on this occasion, for his outstanding contributions during the COVID 19 pandemic period.
Thiru. J. J Ebenezer, MLA, R.K Nagar Constituency, Dr. Suresh Kumar, Director, WHO Collaborating Center, Prof. C. M. K Reddy, Mr Gokulam Gopalan, Chairman, Gokulam Group of Companies, were the other dignitaries who attended the inauguration along with Mr K P Suresh Babu, President, CPPC, Mr P T Ali, Advisor, CPPC and Mr C P Prakash, General Secretary, CPPC.
- Recognizing the Invisible Life of Caregivers, by Ms. Ashu Issar, Gurgaon
- The humanity in palliative care: a physical therapist’s perspective, by Ms. Gehna, Rishikesh
- Palliative Care: A Care that is misunderstood! by Ms. Vandana Mahajan, Mumbai
- A pharmacist’s role is beyond just dispensing medications, by Ms. Saroja Gangiah, Bengaluru
- National Update on Chronic Pain 2021, by Dr. Mayank Gupta and Dr Nimish Singh, Bathinda
To offer help and support during challenging times
- Bereavement support India: https://www.bereavementsupportindia.co.in/
- Sukh Dukh Helpline: https://palliumindia.org/2020/10/sukh-dukh-helpline
- Caregiver Saathi: https://caregiversaathi.co.in/index.php
- Canhelper: https://www.cipla.com/press-releases-statements/can-helper-indias-first-toll-free-emotional-support-helpline-cancer
- National Helpline for Psychosocial and Mental health support offered by The MoHFW, GoI and NIMHANS: 080-46110007 (If you are a health care worker, please press 5 when prompted after dialing the above number to access a direct and dedicated line for healthcare workers)