This is a practical manual on how to plan and implement palliative care services, integrated into existing health-care services, at national or subnational level. It has been designed primarily for health programme managers at national, provincial, or district level, whether they are responsible for noncommunicable diseases, infectious disease programmes, health services, or other technical areas where palliative care is important. It aims to describe a range of options and starting points for building and strengthening palliative care services. A step-wise approach is outlined in each section as much as possible, with an emphasis on approaches that are feasible for low- and middle-income settings.
This manual should contribute to providing equitable access to good palliative care in the context of Universal Health Coverage; it should help countries to strengthen palliative care programmes especially at primary health care level and across disease groups. The approach is based on people-centredness with an aim to address the patients’ needs and expectations. To do so, health services need to involve health-care workers as well as the patients and their communities in a proactive way, taking into account the social and cultural specificities