Author(s): Silbermann M, Arnaout M, Daher M, Nestoros S, Pitsillides B,
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Abstract BACKGROUND: In larger parts of the Middle East palliative care is still misunderstood among health professionals, cancer patients and the public at large. One reason to that is because the term does not obviously communicate the intent of this clinical discipline, which is lending better quality of life while combating cancer. Further, culture, tradition and religion have contributed to this misgiving and confusion especially at the terminal stage of the disease. METHODS: The Middle East Cancer Consortium jointly with the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the American Oncology Nursing Society, the San Diego Hospice Center for Palliative Medicine and the Children's Hospital & Clinics of Minnesota initiated a series of training courses and workshops in the Middle East to provide updated training to physicians, nurses, social workers and psychologists from throughout the region with basic concepts of palliative care and pain managements in adults and children cancers. RESULTS: During the past 6 years hundreds of professionals took part in these educational and training activities, thereby creating the core of trained caregivers who start to make the change in their individual countries. CONCLUSIONS: The outcome of consecutive training activities can overcome geopolitical instabilities, and yield a genuine change in approach of both regulators, medical administrators, medical staff and the public; as to the important contribution of palliative care services to the welfare of the patient and his/her family.
This article was published in Ann Oncol
and referenced in Journal of Palliative Care & Medicine