Networked neighbours to heartening hospices: The exciting journey of palliative care development in India

Srinagesh Simha, Naveen Salins

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Indian philosophy positively influences palliative care and provides a valuable model on how death can be approached positively and without apprehension. Early hospice movement in India started in mid 1980s and by mid 1990s modern hospices were established across India. Oncology palliative care has grown exponentially since mid 1980s and majority of cancer centres across India have only basic forms of palliative care delivery. Non-oncology palliative care in India is almost non-existent. Robust community palliative care in India developed after Neighbourhood Network in Palliative Care (NNPC) program, which was initiated in 2001 to facilitate and foster a sustainable, community-led service capable of providing palliative care to all those in need. Very few centres in India provide paediatric palliative care. Recently novel models of palliative care such as integrated model, respite model and acute palliative care model are emerging at various places in India. Apart from the growth in the clinical services, generalist palliative care education across India is provided via certificate courses conducted by the Indian Association of Palliative Care (IAPC) and similar organisations. Specialist palliative care education in the form of MD Palliative Medicine is provided by two apex institutions. Indian Journal of Palliative Care a peer reviewed indexed journal has its existence in print format since 1995 and is online since 2007. Three states in India have state palliative care policy and there is a profound initiative towards national palliative care policy. Attempt at improving opioid availability in India has been achieved by amending the NDPS act. Advocacy towards end of life care access and provision in India is achieved through joint collaboration with critical care society of India, creating position statement and guidelines and legal representation via task force. Future initiatives such as palliative care provision across national cancer grid, cancer treatment centres and evolution of early palliative care models hold promise for palliative care provision in India.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPalliative Care
Subtitle of host publicationPerspectives, Practices and Impact on Quality of Life. A Global View, Volume 1
PublisherNova Science Publishers Inc
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781536121032
ISBN (Print)9781536120844
Publication statusPublished - 01-01-2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Nursing


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