In March 2017, the Pontifical Academy for Life initiated the PALLIFE Project, establishing an international study group with the purpose of supporting the academy in its initiatives to promote palliative care throughout the world. Through these initiatives, the academy endeavors to advance the development and diffusion of palliative care and foster a culture that accepts death and seeks to cure the dying.
The study group met for the first time in in Rome at the Pontifical Academy for Life from March 31 to April 1, 2017. During this meeting, the group offered a description of the distribution of palliative care services in the world, underlining the opportunities and obstacles to the diffusion and development of palliative care in different geographical and cultural contexts. The study group enumerated the project’s strategy, which includes: annual congresses, regional events to promote palliative care, a questionnaire dealing with the diffusion of palliative care in Catholic health care institutions, advocacy activities directed at competent international organizations, the creation of ad hoc study groups, and the production of a white paper for the development of palliative care.
Through this project, the Pontifical Academy for Life hopes to:
-Promote greater awareness among ecclesial institutions (episcopal conferences, religious orders, lay associations, Catholic universities, etc.) of the need for good palliative care in different areas of the world
-Stimulate the attention of non-ecclesial social and cultural institutions on the situation of palliative care
-Serve as an interlocutor for academies and scientific institutions in the promotion of palliative care in the world (through academic publications, study seminars involving various social actors, participation in blogs and networks of the scientific and academic world, etc.)
-Promote, at different levels, dialogue and cooperation between different stakeholders in the realization of diverse and concrete palliative care projects
The members of the PALLIFE Study Group are: Eduardo Bruera (University of Houston, U.S.), Liliana de Lima e Katherine Pettus (International Association for Hospice & Palliative Care), Christina Puchalski (The George Washington University's Institute for Spirituality and Health, Washington, D.C.), Emmanuel Luyirika (African Palliative Care Association), M. R. Rajogapal (Trivandrum Institute of Palliative Sciences, India), Sr. Jinsun Yong (Catholic University of Korea), Samy Alsirafy (Cairo University, Egypt), Daniela Mosoiu (Hospice “Casa Sperantei”, Romania), Carlos Centeno (University of Navarra, Spain), Thomas Sitte (Deutsche PalliativStiftung, Germany).