Unbearable Pain and Palliative Care

I had never thought or read about palliative care. I stumbled upon this report in surfing the net. On Human Rights Watch website. You may like to read it too.

A short excerpt:

Failure to ensure pain treatment at India’s regional cancer centers—A form of cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.

The majority of patients at India’s regional cancer centers requires palliative care and suffers from moderate to severe pain. Human Rights Watch believes that the India government, while investing considerable funds into regional cancer centers, has failed to take reasonable measures to address their lack of palliative care availability. The government has at its disposal various ways to ensure that regional cancer centers offer palliative care and pain treatment—it could have specifically earmarked funds for palliative care or made the designation of “regional cancer center” conditional on the development of palliative care—but it has chosen not to use them. As of July 2009, more than half of India’s regional cancer centers did not have such services.

As demonstrated in chapter III, the failure to ensure availability of such treatment leaves many patients to needlessly suffer excruciating pain, which may persist over extended periods of time, often without any respite at any time of the day. The kind of suffering these patients endure is so serious that it meets the minimum threshold for government liability under the prohibition of cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.

Here is the LINK