In recent year’s palliative care gained much momentum in Kerala. Palliative care is given to those patients whose disease conditions cannot be cured. Objective of palliative care is to decrease the discomfort and problems arising as a part of the disease and provide a qualitative life till their death. An innovative approach was tried in Kerala, which include extensive community participation. It was believed that it is the responsibility of the society to provide the needed assistance for patients suffering from debilitating diseases like cancer. The assistance can be financial, medical, psychological or spiritual. Now World Health Organization recognized it as an ideal approach in providing palliative care for developing countries.
In certain parts of Kerala, patient population receiving palliative services is more than 90% whereas in developed countries only 70% of the needed gets such services.
I would like to discuss about Hospice. Hospice is a special place for providing palliative services. It has facilities of a small hospital as well as the environment is a homely one. There will be doctors, nurses and others to take care of these patients. The structure of the building with be disable friendly and has a serene atmosphere.
One such Hospice is Holy Cross Hospice in Perumpadappu; Kochi-Kerala. You will be astonished to see such an Hospice in a picturesque place. A kilometer away from the bus stop, the environment is calm with lots of trees. The Hospice has a beautiful garden near the entrance.
Holy Cross Hospice mainly takes care of cancer patients, especially in their end stages. They provide shelter,food,medicines and other necessities absolutely free of cost. A dedicated team of nuns co-ordinates the functions of this Hospice. Patients ranging from children to elderly is taken care of irrespective of caste,creed,gender etc.