Palliative Care Progress Slow, Many Still Without
Palliative care is not available to 80 percent of the world’s population, Press Association reports.
Press Association reported that, according to a Worldwide Palliative Care Alliance (WPCA) study, 98 of the world’s 234 countries are without a hospice or palliative care service.
While the WPCA study shows slightly less than half of the world’s countries do not have care services, “80% of the world's population live in countries with no or low access to medications to treat moderate to severe pain,” according to Press Association.
The WPCA, in response to its own report, “called for palliative care to be accessible to everyone facing a serious life-threatening illness,” Press Association says.
According to Press Association, WPCA’s call for care includes increased services for those living with non-infectious diseases like cancer, heart disease and diabetes.
While care is hard to come by in many areas of the world, some progress has been made, especially in Africa, according to WPCA’s data.
University of Glasgow School of Interdisciplinary Studies Professor David Clark, a co-author of the WPCA report, told Press Association, "We are encouraged that there has been a marked increase in the number of services in operation, from 10,000 in 2006 to 16,000 in 2011.”
Clark added that progress was “modest and slow,” and “Only 20 countries globally - that's just 8.5% - provide palliative care services that are fully integrated with wider health services.”
According to the Press Association report, countries without care include Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Laos and Senegal.