SG Pall eBook

The Lien Centre for Palliative Care (LCPC) is pleased to launch the SG Pall eBook, a mobile- friendly online resource for palliative care tips. This product arose from a  collaboration between LCPC and a group of specialist Palliative Care practitioners from various institutions across Singapore. The  eBook aims to provide quick and  easy access to basic palliative knowledge (through their mobile phones) for  busy healthcare professionals on the go, and is suitable for all care settings.

Access the SG Pall eBook here!

APHN-Hospis Malaysia Workshop: Pain & Symptom Management

One of the objectives of palliative care for patients and their families is to improve their quality of life (QOL). Ensuring good pain and symptoms control for patients with life-limiting illness will help achieve this objective. This three-day workshop deals with aspects of both pharmacological and psychological issues on pain and symptom management so that patients with life-limiting illness are given the opportunity to live out their days with meaning and with as little distress as possible.

Thus, successful pain control requires a multidisciplinary approach to treatment that addresses all aspects of care and suffering. As usual, our workshop concentrates on small group settings and will be most beneficial to healthcare providers working in a palliative or oncology setting, and other related specialties, with a general interest in palliative care.

Registration submission can be made online at www.hospismalaysia.org/painandsymptom/ and emailed to education@hospismalaysia.org.

WHPCD 2017: Health Screening and Information Booths by Singapore Hospice Council

Join the Singapore Hospice Council and their member organisations to celebrate the World Hospice and Palliative Care Day with health screening, information booths and live performances to engage the public to learn about palliative care.

Find out more here.

 

What is your organisation doing for the World Hospice & Palliative Care Day & Voices for Hospices 2017? Let us know in the comments below or email us at aphn@aphn.org!

WHPCD 2017: Patient Get-together by Pallium India

Pallium India will be organising “Thalolam 2017” in conjunction with the World Hospice Palliative Care Day 2017. About 500 participants, including patients with life-limiting diseases and their family patients, will gather on 14 October 2017 for the get-together.

Read more here.

 

What is your organisation doing for the World Hospice & Palliative Care Day & Voices for Hospices 2017? Let us know in the comments below or email us at aphn@aphn.org!

WHPCD 2017: Hospice Film Festival/Book Fair by Hospice Foundation of Taiwan

In conjunction with the WHPCD 2017, Hospice Foundation of Taiwan will be holding a Film Festival featuring ‘Oscar et le Dame rose’, ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ and ‘In His Chart’. There will also be a feature talk by movie director Wu Nien-jen and a book fair focusing on palliative and hospice care.

 

What is your organisation doing for the World Hospice & Palliative Care Day & Voices for Hospices 2017? Let us know in the comments below or email us at aphn@aphn.org!

2017 世界慈怀暨缓和医疗日 – 关键信息

2017 世界慈怀暨缓和医疗日

主题:全民健康覆盖与安宁缓和医疗别遗落了在苦海中的人群

COUNT 数据)

世界42% 的国家没有缓和医疗服务

  • 衡量重点:是否所有卫生服务的质量合格而有效,并是大家可支付的范围?
  • 数据测量后才会有行动!缓和医疗的相关数据应含在全民健康覆盖的数据里
  • 领导者与医疗体系应携手同行,照顾那些罹患威胁生命疾病的人
  • 别再等政策制定!应当机立断,呼吁领导者行动,罹患威胁生命疾病的人不应该被大家遗忘!
  • 现今只有20 个国家将缓和医疗列入国家医疗体系
  • 每年有4千万人需要缓和医疗服务;包括2 千万需要临终关怀的人
  • 可是,只有14% 的临终需求被服务到,完整的缓和医疗供应更少于10%
  • 78% 的需求存在于发展中国家

CARE 护理)

没有缓和医疗服务不算全民健康覆盖

  • 全民健康覆盖的定义是,确保所有人都能获得所需的健康促进、预防、治疗、康复和缓和医疗卫生服务
  • 缓和医疗是全民健康覆盖里不可或缺的项目
  • 全民健康覆盖,包括缓和医疗,是确保持续性的关键
  • 全民健康覆盖是确保所有人都能获得所需的卫生服务,包括缓和医疗,保障人们不会因使用这些服务而陷入经济困难
  • 凡是需要卫生服务、缓和医疗的人,都应获得有质量并且负担得起的服务
  • 全民健康覆盖的目标就是让所有人能够公平地获得卫生服务,尤其是针对亟需要缓和医疗的人群
  • 需要缓和医疗服务的人往往是最为需要卫生服务的人群,他们应被列入全民健康覆盖里

COST 资金)

缓和医疗可以为患有严重或威脅生命疾病之病人家庭减轻经济负担

  • 没有人应该因病致贫
  • 昂贵的治疗费因没有列入国家医疗保健系统导致病人承担财务风险
  • 罹患威胁生命的疾病之病人家庭会因支付无效昂贵的治疗陷入经济困难
  • 如果家中经济支柱病倒或照顾者需要辞职照顾病患,少了经济来源,会造成财务风险
  • 昂贵的就医交通费用会增加重病的病人跟家属其经济风险
  • 世界的大部分地区,慈怀及缓和医疗机构提供的服务是免费的
  • 所有人,不论其收入、疾病种类或年龄,都应获得国家基本卫生服务,包括缓和医疗

Resources

Imagine: UHC and palliative care video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J0xy1jMwDBg

APHN Mini Interview Series – Dr Ong Wah Ying, Singapore

Dr Ong Wah Ying

Dr Ong Wah Ying

This interview is the first of the mini interview series featuring members of the 17th Council of the Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Network (APHN).

In this issue, we are interviewing Dr Ong Wah Ying, the appointed council member[1] from Singapore.  Dr Ong is also the Medical Director of Dover Park Hospice (DPH) and a council member of the Singapore Hospice Council (SHC), the national umbrella body.

What is something about you that will surprise people?

I used to be the squash captain back in high school! People find it surprising because I hardly exercise nowadays. But I still have a lot of hidden energy in me!

You learnt how to cook when spending 6 months (under the Ministry of Health’s Health Manpower Development Plan) with Southern Adelaide Palliative Care services. What was the experience like?

There was a smoke detector in the apartment and the fire engine will arrive if I do any heavy cooking. So I learned how to cook rice using the microwave oven and that is an achievement! I will mix it with my canned tuna and sometimes hard boiled eggs too!

If you were to choose an object to represent the journey in palliative care, what will it be and why?

I would think it will be a rubber band! Sometimes we need to stretch like a rubber band in order to tie things together. But at the same time, we need to be careful not to overstretch till we snap.

In order to do our line of work, we must try. We must go all the way. We are passionate people. Especially during the training years, most of the time we feel like we can do everything. But we really have to learn to find our own limits along the way and find out when to ask for help from team members. Sometimes we do not even recognise that we are fatigued. Many of us, including me, learned this the hard way.

A rubber band will return to its original shape after stretching. So my experience is to do more when it is time to do more and come back to the original shape. Look for more rubber bands if you need strength and learn to shoot if your target is far away!

Do you see any synergies in the roles you play at DPH, SHC and APHN? What are some areas you think Singapore can be more involved on a regional level?

Yes, definitely. I think APHN needs a greater presence in Singapore. It is important for us to be part of the collective voice for important issues, like stating our stand against euthanasia. The local community needs to know that we cannot be isolated. A lot more can be done in terms of bringing information and ideas across and back. We can collaborate to further extend our local education arms.

Having more involvement from medical students, trainees and various levels of staff will give them greater exposure and broaden their horizon. By being part of a common interest group, we can learn from each other, and be more aware of the updates of developments in services, education and research around the region. We can also leverage on existing knowledge and research to share with other countries, such as by hosting people for attachments and visitors from the region.

I believe that Singapore can contribute by sharing our experiences in non cancers like dementia, how we start-up services as well as new discoveries in the field through the APHN dialog platform. In addition to coordinating sharing by experts in our country, we can learn from experts in the region too. This is something I hope to build across the three organisations.

___________________________________________________________________

[1] The APHN Council consists of 7 members to be appointed by sectors on a rotation to be determined alphabetically according to the name of the sectors (Constitution 12.2a), 7 elected members, and 6 Co-opted member.

The article first appeared in the APHN newsletter Issue 33. Read here.
All information is correct at time of publishing.

By: Joyce Chee, APHN Executive

Singapore Statement

The Singapore Statement was issued at the 12th Asia Pacific Hospice Conference held in Singapore from 26th – 29th July.

Photo Credit: HPM Global

Singapore Statement

We participants of the 12th International Conference of the Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Network on 28 July 2017 in Singapore,

  • finding that there is a huge burden of unrelieved suffering associated with life limiting illnesses in the region,
  • viewing with concern that less than 10% of those in need have access to pain relief and palliative care globally, and
  • aware of the World Health Assembly resolution of 2014[1] which calls on all member countries’ health systems to integrate evidence-based, cost effective and equitable palliative care services in the continuum of care, community and home based care and universal coverage schemes,

request member states in the region to ensure:

  • adequate funding and effective implementation of national palliative care strategies to implement palliative care in the region,
  • the inclusion of palliative care in non-communicable diseases control programs and in HIV and TB control programs,
  • inclusion of palliative care education in basic education for all health professionals, and
  • improving access to palliative care for children and young people.

[1] Reference: World Health Organisation. World Health Assembly WHA 67.19 Agenda Item 15.5. Strengthening of palliative care as a component of comprehensive care throughout the life course. Available at http://apps.who.int/gb/ebwha/pdf_files/WHA67/A67_R19-en.pdf

‘Happy Death Day’ – palliative care and death awareness exhibition held in Thailand

This article was originally from eHospice.

Some 3,300 participants, with another 30,000 people watching the exhibition online, attended the ‘Happy Death Day’ palliative care and death awareness exhibition. The exhibition consisted of various zones, consisted of a talk on how to prepare for death and a ‘Last Talk’ session where people diagnosed with terminal illnesses share their experiences, feelings, hopes and dreams. The second day saw participants reflecting on their lives while lying in a coffin at the exhibition and interacting with speakers, patients, carers and the healthcare team at the ‘Death Cafe’, a casual setting to promote conversations on palliative care or death-related issues.

Read the full article here.

 

An exhibition is an interactive way to promote awareness of hospice and palliative care during World Hospice and Palliative Care Day 2017Email us at aphn@aphn.org to let us know what activities you will be having to celebrate and support hospice and palliative care.

APHN statement on our stand against the deliberate ending of life

The Asia Pacific Hospice and Palliative Care Network promotes access to good-quality hospice and palliative care for all in the Asia Pacific region. We value every moment of life and do not support any action that has the intention of shortening a person’s life. Restoring dignity and enhancing quality of life is the basis of palliative care.

We do not support the deliberate ending of life and we view with concern moves in certain jurisdictions in the region to legalise physician-administered euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide.  Licensing doctors to administer or supply lethal drugs to seriously-ill patients has no place in the practice of health care.  Such moves devalue the dying and undermine society’s responsibility to protect its most vulnerable members.

Australia and New Zealand are acknowledged leaders in fostering palliative care development in the Asia Pacific region. In much of this region, pioneers are struggling to establish good end-of-life services in the face of little political and financial support. Eighty percent of the world’s dying has little or no access to morphine for pain relief.

The United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand have been ranked as the top three countries worldwide in the 2015 Economist Quality of Death Index. The eyes of the world are on these nations and on how they discharge their responsibilities to dying people.

For those of us trying to improve end-of-life care, licensing doctors to provide or administer lethal drugs to patients poses serious risks of sabotaging efforts around the globe to convince governments that pain relief and good end-of-life care are basic human rights.

The Asia Pacific Hospice and Palliative Care Network appeals to you therefore to recognise your responsibilities on the world stage when considering any proposed legislation before you.

 

Yours faithfully

 

Associate Professor Cynthia Goh
Chair, Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Network

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Thank you everyone for your support. The comments section is closed. You may read the archived comments below.

Comments from the community:

“Thank you for highlighting the risk that legalising assisted dying risks sabotaging efforts to improve pain management, palliative care and end of life care in countries where there is a poor commitment to human rights.”

“The vast majority of patients can die comfortably with good palliative care. Resources are better utilised enhancing good palliative care, rather than developing morally and ethically grey services (Euthanasia and Physician Assisted Suicide) that may only benefit a very small minority. Society should evolve to compassionately care for dying patients, and not evolve towards using euthanasia as a convenient but cold alternative.”

“It is a matter of urgency to stop this move to legalize Euthanasia, whatever else it may be called, PAS or MAID etc.”

“As a specialist physician in Palliative Care for 34 years I have assisted more than 30,000 people at the end of their lives. I have never killed anyone and find the idea abhorrent.”

“Human rights is the right to live till the end”

“We need palliative care not euthanasia”

“I support the APHN statement against Physician assisted suicide and Euthanasia”

“Respecting life is to allow the person to live to the end with holistic support”

“They say assisted dying doesn’t hurt palliative care. Sign up to show you disagree.”

“I fully support the APHN stance on resisting any law change on assisted dying”

“No to Euthanasia and Physician Assisted Suicide! We are committed to the defense of human life from womb to tomb. There is a time to live and a time to die. Let us not artificially prolong nor shorten life or the dying process. It’s all about respect, stewardship, and accountability.”

“To take care of Elders and Sick people is Asian tradition. We should generate multidimensional & creative ways to reduce the sufferings at the end-of-life, not PAS/Euthanasia.”

“End of life care/ care of terminally ill is NOT physician assisted suicide.”

“There can be no guaranteed legal protection for those that are vulnerable against coercion if euthanasia is legalised. The focus needs to be on equitable and good palliative care for all.”

“I wholeheartedly support the invaluable skill and support that is given to patients from our own Palliative Care team. I would also welcome more frontline education given to medical staff to enable more “to get on board with timely and compassionate” patient referrals to the Palliative team. I would also support more funding to enable more frontline staff to be trained and encouraged to “grow” Palliative services in our mainstream hospitals. Thank you”

“Better understanding of palliative care by both health professionals and the community is needed to overcome the myths of euthanasia and the slippery slope of legal quagmire if euthanasia was to be legalised in Victoria.”

“The Chinese word for euthanasia is 安乐死, which literally means “happy death”. However, “happy death” is not the same as “Happy. Death”

“Doctors never kill. Even at the last moment of life has its own values.”

“Palliative care provides comfort for patient till the end of their life, it does not provide comfort to end their life.”

“We need to find better ways to care for human beings that are suffering instead of silencing the sufferer through actions of euthanasia or to provide the means for assisted dying to occur. Fund better care options for the chronically ill and dying – not legislate against the living that are already vulnerable and need care”

Palliative Care Workshop on Suffering and Hope

Workshop On Suffering & Hope: 4 – 6 August 2017

This three (3) day workshop, in collaboration with the Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Network, addresses how to deal with issues of suffering as many may not know how to give hope when all curative treatment becomes futile. It is most suitable for doctors, senior clinicians, nurses, psychologists, counsellors and especially those involved in making crucial decisions when the transitions from cure, to prolonging survival and palliation becomes the aim of holistic patient-centred care.

Please find here, the workshop program and registration form for those who are interested to attend. Registration submission can be made either online at our website: www.hospismalaysia.org or, emailed to: education@hospismalaysia.org or faxed to: 603 9133 3941. For further enquiries, please contact Wai Mun or Ira at telephone: 03 9133 3936 extension 267.

How to uphold patient dignity at the end of life

This article is from Palliative Matters.

According to Dr Harvey Max Chochinov, international expert in dignity and palliative care, dignity is not just a concept associated with managing bodily functions but also a dying person’s perception of how they are seen by others. For people who are dying, they feel a loss of dignity when focus on their illness or disease leaves them with the sense they have been defined generically as a patient and all they have.

The research also shows significantly higher rates of depression, anxiety and feelings of hopelessness in people experiencing a loss of dignity and healthcare workers have a responsibility in understanding the impact of their interactions with patients.

Read the full article here.