Primary Palliative Care: Global in Rotterdam!

EAPC Primary Care Reference Group joins forces with similar groups in Africa, Asia Pacific, and Latin America to promote universal access to palliative care

A packed room at the EAPC Congress in Rotterdam enthusiastically heard the chairs of these new regional groups detail exciting developments in their regions.
First Tania Pastrana: EAPC Primary Palliative Care Reference Group (Germany) and Sebastian Moine (Scotland) gave an overview and identified innovations in Germany, Scotland and France (link to presentation).

Then Oladayo Afolabi from Nigeria, Chair of the new African Palliative Care Association (APCA) Comprehensive Chronic Care and Palliative Care within Primary Healthcare Reference Group presented progress from Malawi, South Africa and Nigeria. (link to video)

Next Chamath Fernando from Sri Lanka, Chair of the new Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Netowrk (APHN) Primary Palliative Care Special Interest Group (Sri Lanka) enthusiastically illustrated great progress in India, Nepal and Indonesia (link to video).

Finally Paola Ruiz Colombia – President of the Latin American Association for Palliative Care (ALCP) outlined progress in Colombia, Argentina, Panama, and Chile. (link to video).

Jose Pereira, Chair of Pallium Canada, hearing of this meeting, had sent highlights from North America, sadly we did not have time to view the video time (link to video).

Dan Munday from UK and Nepal then led a discussion when we heard encouraging input from many other countries.  We affirmed the potentially that primary care have to provide universal access to a palliative care approach worldwide. But there may be no one model, although the principles should be defined. We need to build on structures, systems, and resources already present for chronic diseases and on community resources. Access and quality remain a challenge in all settings – from high to low-income settings.

We felt that we need to build a Consensus Statement regarding Primary Palliative Care (PPC) definition, scope, and framework for its implementation worldwide.  Many in the room agreed to participate. Any others interested wishing to be involved should email:

Chamath (Sri Lanka) has also agreed to apply for a grant to WONCA (The World Organization of Family Physicians) so we can collaborate with their special interest groups to develop a framework of competencies in palliative care to equip those engaged with primary care delivery.

These two activities, we hope will be the beginning of a truly global collaboration in advocacy and education and service developments so that patients can universally access palliative care as part of their health care and also in the community. In whatever shape is best for the local communities.

Scott Murray

Founder of EAPC Primary Palliative Care Reference Group

Sebastien Moine

Co-Chair of Reference Group

Tania Pastrana  

Co-Chair of Reference Group

Nicole Forster

Group Convener

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