Press Trust of India

JK gets first chapter of IAPC in major boost to palliative care in UT

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Jammu: Jammu and Kashmir has got its first chapter of the India Association of Palliative Care (IAPC) with specialist Rohit Lahori heading the 10-member team of doctors at this facility to provide specialised medical care for people living with a serious illness.

IAPC national president Sushma Bhatnagar, who is also the chief of the National Cancer Institute in Jhajjar, Haryana and head of the department, palliative care, at AIIMS, New Delhi, nominated the members of the J&K chapter.

Besides Lahori, who was nominated as president, the other office bearers include general secretary Nusrat Jehan, treasurer Mubasher Ahmad and joint secretaries Rajesh Mahajan and Arshi Taj.

Nazir Khan, Arif and Shabnum were nominated members of the advisory board, while Yousaf Tak and Naine were made the executive members.

Palliative care is an interdisciplinary medical care-giving approach aimed at optimising the quality of life and mitigating suffering among people with serious, complex and often terminal illnesses.

“This is the first time that a chapter of the IAPC for Jammu and Kashmir has been formulated with the members from both the divisions who have contributed immensely for the upliftment of this speciality,” Lahori, in-charge of palliative care at the Government Hospital, Gandhinagar here, said.

He said the chapter has been formulated for the upliftment of palliative care services and to spread awareness regarding palliative care.

“The main aim is to provide services at the doorsteps of patients so that they do not have to suffer or travel for these services outside J&K,” the doctor said.

He said the IAPC has also confirmed to hold state conferences in Kashmir valley next year followed by an international conference of the IAPC in Jammu in 2025.

Earlier, the Government Hospital in Gandhinagar and the Government Medical College Jammu were nominated among the 10 hospitals of north India as research centres of the ICMR in collaboration with AIIMS New Delhi for hand holding of two divisions of J&K for palliative care services.

“This is a three-year research programme and will contribute towards providing these services in all district hospitals of J&K,” Lahori said.

He said the Jammu and Kashmir administration has already dedicated a 10-bed ward for pain and palliative care services in all district hospitals that were inaugurated by Lt Governor Manoj Sinha on March 31 last year at the Government Hospital in Gandhinagar.

Twenty doctors and as many nurses have been trained under the Certificate Course in Essentials of Palliative Care (CCEPC) programme at the Government Hospital Gandhinagar to amplify these services in collaboration with the IAPC.

The IAPC chapter has proposed the same level of training for Kashmir in collaboration with the health department.

Lahori said the IAPC chapter will work to train healthcare givers at district and sub-district levels so that care can be provided at the grass root level and people are made aware of the services to make society free from pain and suffering.


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