End of Life Care.

I AM GOING TO DIE ONEDAY, the one affirmation I have for myself everyday these days. This statement brings me positivity, gives me courage, spurs me on to do better in life. I start wanting to do good right from the time I wake up. This can be classed as a negative thought but for me it is a positive one.

Death is a hard thing to get over, may be we can never get over it. I have to explain to myself it is inevitable but that does not help. As a doctor can I make death better though. We talk about dignity while alive but there needs to be dignity in death too.

As a general practitioner we put a lot of stress on end of life care. Make the last days of a person as comfortable as possible for patients and their families. The whole team is geared towards it. Reception staff, practice nurses, district nurses, cancer care nurses and of course the doctors work towards achieving high standards of care for palliative patients.

I was talking to my mother about palliative care and hospice in India. She can understand the concept but does not understand how it can be done. We got talking about a relative who recently died with cancer and she was in a lot of pain due to bone metastasis and bed sores. In Patna to get morphine is a huge issue, relatives need special scripts and only few places can dispense it. Hospice is no where to be seen.

Letting somebody die in peace and comfort with full dignity can be a successful medical approach to patient care. I absolutely wish this can be taken forwards in Patna and all over India.

11 thoughts on “End of Life Care.

  1. Today is the first day of the rest of my life. What will I do with it? Today is a good day to have a Good Day!

    Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die today. -James Dean

    Yet you do not know [the least thing] about what may happen in your life tomorrow. [What is secure in your life?] You are merely a vapor [like a puff of smoke or a wisp of steam from a cooking pot] that is visible for a little while and then vanishes [into thin air]. -James, AMP

  2. I think dignity in death is very important. Suffering and lingering on against one’s will is harsh. Lucky are those who pass on peacefully. Great post! 🙂

  3. Totally agree. Ideally atleast every tertiary health care centre must have a end of life care concept and all facilities required. And that must be extended to home based care for the needy.

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