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Policy in palliative care 

Policy in palliative care
Policy in palliative care

David C. Currow

and Stein Kaasa

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date: 24 January 2022

Hospice and palliative care services have developed in very different ways around the world. Most have been built on the momentum of visionary clinicians and funders who have responded to perceived needs from health-care providers, patients, families, and communities rather than in response to well-formed national policies with an adequately funded planning and development phase. This chapter describes the work that is being done at pan-national, national, and sub-national levels to create effective policies that can further the key work of hospice/palliative care, often after a large number of apparently unconnected local services have been well established. The chapter highlights that there are particular challenges in forming public policy on hospice/palliative care, especially the end-of-life component, and notes the importance of ‘patients’ voices’-the voice of the community which helps to inform health policies including end-of-life care. The chapter ends by describing a variety of country-specific and World Health Organization policy documents and legislation.

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