More than half of all patients with cancer experience pain. In advanced disease, close to two thirds of patients report pain, about half of whom suffer pain of moderate-to-severe intensity. If cancer pain is not adequately treated, it can have devastating consequences that affect the quality of life of patients and their families. Palliative care improves the lives of patients and their families. Watch the ‘Life asked Death‘ trailer now and learn how palliative care services can be developed in ALL countries.
Produced by Moonshine Movies, LIFE ASKED DEATH highlights the scale of pain and suffering that needs to be urgently addressed in Asia, and offers insights into the positive outcomes that can be achieved even in resource-limited countries. The documentary brings viewers to Bangladesh, Myanmar and Sri Lanka to witness how Lien Collaborative’s specialist volunteers bring palliative care and training to these countries. When international experts and local stakeholders work together to develop palliative care capacity in the government-run health systems, the barriers to pain relief and humane care can be removed.
The Asian population is huge and so is the scale of suffering. We know how to relieve the suffering, but somehow are doing very little to transform this knowledge into action. As a result, around 11 million Asians a year will die in pain and distress because they lack access to pain medications.
Living and dying in pain: It doesn’t have to happen.
Oral morphine is the gold standard essential medication for pain relief according to the WHO. It typically costs several times less than other medications. However, insufficient knowledge, unfounded fears, over-regulation and commercial interests means that this pain medication is not available and accessible to the majority of patients.
It is an essential service provided by the government. The World Health Assembly recommends that palliative care should be part of the healthcare package that governments provide for the whole population, and integrated into the healthcare system including as part of universal health coverage.
A pilot project in Asia offers one workable solution in countries with limited resources, such as Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, it is possible to start palliative care services in the main government run hospitals.