Date: 14/10/23 (Saturday)
Time: 8.00am – 1.00pm
Venue: Children’s Specialist Hospital (National University of Malaysia), Cheras.
The programme started off with a forum. The forum focused on this year’s theme “Compassionate Communities : Together for Palliative Care”.
Dr Richard Lim, Palliative Medicine Consultant and National Advisor for Palliative Care in Ministry of Health, explained the significance of celebrating WHPCD to professionals in the field, patients and families and the impact on the service locally, nationally and worldwide. Dr Munirah Ibrahim, Family Medicine and Palliative Doctor at Kasih Hospice Foundation, representing community hospices, explained about the theme this year on Compassionate Communities, which essentially means that everyone has a role to play in expanding palliative care to reach every single person that requires it. Illness and caregiving, dying and death, grief and bereavement, will inevitably affect each and every one of us.
Our special guest, Mr Irwan Ismail, courageously shared his journey with his beloved late son Adam, receiving invaluable support from palliative care teams in hospital to hospice in the community, from the beginning till the end, and afterwards. He expressed that the support he received was crucially important in giving his family the knowledge, skills and especially strength to care for Adam and keep him comfortable throughout. The forum was expertly moderated by Dr Lam Chee Loong, Senior Lecturer and Consultant in Palliative Medicine at University Malaya, who reminded us about the big palliative care family we belong to, breaking the silos we tend to work in, and increasing communication and connection between us.
This year’s WHPCD also coincides with the 25th anniversary of Malaysian Hospice and Palliative Care Council (MHPCC) – previously known as Malaysian Hospice Council (MHC). Our Chairperson Dr. Ng Woon Fang gave an opening speech thanking everyone for their hard work and support throughout the years. The event was officiated by Dr. Mohamed Iqbal bin Hamzah (Director of the Medical Practice Division in Ministry of Health, Malaysia), cementing the support given by the ministry to continue expanding palliative care networks in Malaysia. The event was attended by representatives from at least 20 different organisations providing palliative care in Malaysia including hospices, primary health clinics providing domiciliary services as well as palliative care units in government and private hospitals. It is one of the first few social events that included almost all types of palliative providers under one roof to recognise all of the efforts done by so many groups and individuals.
During the event, MHPCC also launched two publications:
1) 2nd Edition of The Handbook of Palliative Medicine in Malaysia; and
2) MHPCC 25 years Chronicles 1998-2023
The Handbook is aimed for any healthcare professionals and allied health professionals providing palliative care services in Malaysia. The Chronicles will serve as tool for promotion and advocacy work, highlighting all the services offered by all of our 27 organisational members together with individual members from all around the country. The Chronicles also included the most up-to-date directory of palliative care service providers in Malaysia.
The MHPCC is very proud of everyone who came together to support the event and we look forward to having more events in the future and collaborating with other organisations to further advance and expand palliative care and hospice services in Malaysia and in the region.
Dr. Saiful Adni Abd Latif,
Malaysian Hospice and Palliative Care Council (MHPCC).
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This information was published with permission from Malaysia Hospice and Palliative Care Council.