The increased need for palliative cancer care in Sub-Saharan Africa

van der Plas, W. Y., Benjamens, S. & Kruijff, S., Jul-2020, In : European Journal of Surgical Oncology. 46, 7, p. 1373-1376 4 p.

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Although palliative care as a discipline in high income countries is maturing, it is still somewhat in its infancy in sub-Saharan Africa, an area where this type of care is needed the most: more than 80% of people in urgent need of palliative care live in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). We will describe why the development of palliative care in LMICs is increasingly essential, and how it is currently still underdeveloped. In this manuscript, we discuss the challenges in organizing palliative care in LMICs in regard to the four WHO palliative care pillars: policy, education, medication, and implementation. We will illustrate how several Sub-Saharan African countries are increasingly able to provide palliative care analyzed in terms of these pillars. Ultimately, scientific research and cost-effectiveness analyses of well-developed palliative programs, should encourage both local and international governments and authorities to provide more capital and human recourses for palliative care in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1373-1376
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Surgical Oncology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul-2020


  • Sub-Saharan Africa, Palliative care, Cancer, ILLNESS, PROGRAM, BURDEN

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