World Hospice and Palliative Care Day (WHPCD) is an annual unified day of action to celebrate and support hospice and palliative care around the world. WHPCD has been marked every year for the last 19 years. Join us on Saturday 14 October to advocate for better hospice and palliative care services around the world.
The WHPCD theme for 2023 is Compassionate Communities: Together for Palliative Care. Compassionate communities care for people, assist people to live in the place they call home, connect people to services, and raise awareness about end-of-life issues. We will engage governments and key stakeholders in a health promotion approach to palliative care, aiming to support solidarity among community members throughout their life course up to and at the end of life. In recent years, hundreds of compassionate communities have been developed all around the world. We believe that palliative care working alongside compassionate communities multiplies the ability to respond to the needs of the most vulnerable in our communities.
The WHPCA Has been in official relations with the World Health Organisation (WHO) for many years and this allows us to work in collaboration, including promotion of WHPCD. The WHO defines palliative care as an approach that improves the quality of life of patients (adults and children) and their families who are facing the problems associated with life-threatening illness, through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification and correct assessment and treatment of pain and other problems, whether physical, psychosocial or spiritual.
“WHO calls on all countries to expand access to palliative Care as part of their journey towards Universal Health Coverage (UHC). That means stronger policies and better access to essential medicines.” Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus Director-General WHO
In 2014 the World Health Assembly unanimously passed resolution WHA.19 “Strengthening of Palliative Care as a Component of Comprehensive Care Throughout the Life Course.” This resolution calls on all member states to strengthen and integrate palliative care throughout their health care systems following the WHO public health model, which includes ensuring that policies are in place, comprehensive education on palliative care is available, essential palliative care medicines are available, and affordable, and that programs are funded and implemented.
This year the WHO partnered together with the WHPCA in solidarity for people living with palliative care needs by recording a message. We encourage you to share this video widely. You can access the video on our digital platforms below.