The woman helping Mongolians die with dignity – BBC News

DYING A NOT-SO-PAINFUL DEATH — Revisited with additional commentary

Note: The following two paragraphs are a repeat of an earlier post where I had problems with the link. This BBC News piece had a strong impact on me in 2017 and now in 2018 I want to add more to the conversation about Palliative Care.

I had been in the hospice house in Salem, OR for two months when this article appeared on my BBC News feed.  And I had posted it on a previous Facebook page.  It was this article where I learned about the European Association for Palliative Care and the need for palliative care services in the former Soviet Socialist Republics.

Why would I be encouraged at this time to embark on the in-depth study of dying when I was, in fact, dying?  That’s because I am getting a head start on my next life that will be lived in Europe.  This certainty is something I can’t explain; I just feel it in my bones. And that encourages me to make use of the time left to me in this life.


Dr. Davaasuren had the deaths of her father and mother-in-law from cancer, as well as witnessing the plight of non-smiling children in constant pain from leukemia, to motivate her to learn about palliative care. In her country of nomadic herders who consume high amounts of alcohol, if the cancer was non-curative, the patient was discharged from hospital and left to die an agonizing, increasingly-painful death. Morphine could ease the pain, but government officials feared an increase in illegal opioid abuse if terminal cancer patients were given morphine.

Both the European Association for Palliative Care (EAPC Hq in Belgium) and the International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care (IAHPC Hq in Houston, TX) have a multitude of resources, free-of-charge, to help patients, families, and friends deal with terminal illnesses. To wear blinders and not accept the future demise of a loved one to any one of a number of terminal illnesses is unhealthy for all and definitely unfair to the person dying.

There are countless readings on Palliative Care, downloaded on my I-pad, I need to read Both the EAPC and the IAHPC are good places to search for information on Palliative Care.

Fifteen years ago there was no such thing as palliative care – care for the dying – in Mongolia. Now there is, thanks to Odontuya Davaasuren.
— Read on

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