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ESMO recognizes centers of excellence in palliative care for cancer patients
Date:9/22/2009

The European Society for Medical Oncology is proud to announce that it has formally recognized 27 cancer centers for their commitment to providing excellent palliative care as part of the care they offer to patients.

The prestigious "ESMO Designated Centers of Integrated Oncology and Palliative Care" program gives cancer centers international recognition for providing comprehensive services in supportive and palliative care.

The aim of palliative care is to achieve the best possible quality of life for patients, their carers and family, by providing relief from pain and other distressing symptoms, and by integrating the physical, psychological, social, emotional and spiritual aspects of care.

"As a leader in the field of palliative care, ESMO is committed to excellence in all aspects of oncological care," said Professor Nathan Cherny, Chair of the ESMO Palliative Care Working Group.

"Palliative care is not something that should be offered in an ad-hoc way. At ESMO, we believe providing the best quality palliative care is both a moral and a clinical imperative. Given this, we are extremely encouraged to see the number of accredited centers continuing to grow."

The ESMO Designated Centers program has been operating since 2003. To date, 73 centers have gained accreditation after a rigorous evaluation process, including centers in Europe, India, Argentina, Hong Kong, Canada, the USA and Australia.

"The medical oncologist coordinates cancer care in all of its phases," Professor Cherny said. "For patients with advanced cancer, and among those approaching the end of life, this requires close coordination of palliative care to optimise quality of life."

ESMO established the Designated Centers program with the aim of encouraging the integration of palliative care services into existing cancer care, and to support palliative care education and training for medical oncologists and other healthcare professionals.

Cancer Centers anywhere in the world can apply to receive accreditation as an ESMO Designated Center of Integrated Oncology and Palliative Care.

All designated centers have proven that they provide closely integrated oncology and palliative care clinical services. The treatment they offer incorporates expert care for relieving pain, other physical symptoms, and psychological distress.


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Contact: ESMO Press Office
media@esmo.org
41-919-731-907
European Society for Medical Oncology
Source:Eurekalert

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