CAN CEO advocates for palliative care investment in Namibia

WINDHOEK: Cancer Association of Namibia (CAN) Chief Executive Officer Rolf Hansen has called for increased investment in palliative care, highlighting Namibia’s critical need for comprehensive end-of-life support.

Hansen in an interview with Nampa on Wednesday said prioritising palliative care could enhance the quality of life for cancer patients and their families across Namibia.

‘Palliative care is not merely an option; it is an essential component of holistic cancer care. As we navigate the challenges of cancer treatment and management, it is imperative that we do not overlook the importance of providing comfort, dignity, and support to patients facing advanced stages of the disease,’ Hansen said.

He underscored the misconception that palliative care is synonymous with end-of-life care, saying that it encompasses a spectrum of services aimed at addressing physical, emotional, and spiritual needs throughout the cancer journey.

”Investing in palliative care is not just a matter of compassion but a strat
egic imperative. Integrating palliative care into the country’s healthcare system can mitigate unnecessary suffering, reduce hospitalisation, and alleviate the burden on patients and their families,’ he said.

The CAN CEO highlighted that access to palliative care services remains limited in Namibia, particularly in rural areas, stressing an urgent need for expanding palliative care infrastructure, training healthcare professionals, and raising awareness to ensure equitable access to these vital services across the country.

‘Palliative care is a fundamental human right, yet thousands of Namibians are currently underserved,’ Hansen lamented while calling on government officials, healthcare providers, and civil society organisations to prioritise palliative care investment as a cornerstone of Namibia’s cancer control strategy.

‘Together, we have the power to transform the landscape of cancer care in Namibia and uphold the dignity of every individual affected by this devastating disease,’ he said.

Source: Th
e Namibia Press Agency