Quality end-of-life care, the subject of intense and controversial discussion in medical ethics, is barely discussed in India.
We argue that a tabooing of the topic will not provide a solution. An open societal, professional and ethical discussion and regulation are essential. A multidisciplinary team approach is often required in order to support ethical decision-making and to assist in devising an individualized end of life patient management plan. The authors discuss the medical, ethical, legal, and psychosocial challenges, strategies to quality end-of-life care in India with a focus on available international guidelines, recommendations and practices.
For the end-of-life patient, important areas of focus are receiving adequate pain and symptom management, avoiding inappropriate prolongation of dying, achieving a sense of control, relieving burden, and strengthening relationships with loved ones. From the care giver’s perspective, we need to stress on the need is to recast quality end-of-life care as a global public health concern, strengthen capacity to deliver quality end-of-life care to improve strategies to acquire information about the quality of end-of-life care.
Keywords: assisted suicide; wish to die; palliative care; hasten death; End-of-life care; Euthanasia.
Friday, April 22, 2016