World Palliative Care Day: Elisabeth Kübler-Ross Foundation launches Maharashtra chapter in Pune

On the occasion of World Palliative Care Day, which was observed on October 13, the Elisabeth Kübler-Ross Foundation (EKRF) has launched its Maharashtra-India chapter in Pune


The chapter will be headed by Dr Priyadarshini Kulkarni, Senior Palliative Care Physician

EKRF is a US-based International charity inspired by the life of humanitarian and hospice pioneer, Dr. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross(July 8, 1926 – August 24, 2004). This Swiss-born psychiatrist was a pioneer in near-death studies and is best-known as the author of the ground-breaking book,On Death and Dying(1969).

Announcing the launch, Dr Kulkarni observed, “It is an honour to be chosen by EKRF to take up this responsibility. At the same time, it is a huge responsibility to carry her legacy forward and work for the people here.”

In Death and Dying, Dr Kübler-Rosshighlighted the importance of listening to and respecting dying person’s needs. This book put forth what is now known as the Kübler-Ross model. She defined the five stages of grief as a pattern of adjustment to loss.

Through the EKRF Maharashtra-India chapter, Dr Kulkarni hopes to create greater awareness about the causes Dr Kübler-Ross espoused.

“We accept death, but we hesitate to openly talk about death,” Dr Kulkarni noted.

“As a palliative care physician, I have seen family members of critically-ill patients, pleading with doctors to do everything possible, even after they were told about the futility of any intervention. Greater clarity about the medical condition, and an open dialogue amongmedical professionals, the patients and the members of the family can greatlyhelp reduce unnecessary suffering.”

Ken Ross, Founder and President of EKRF and the son of Dr Ross, stated that the opening of the chapter was another step in the foundation’s efforts “To reach many communities in different countries. It is in the spirit of embracing all of life, which includes death, that we further the work of the foundation.”

“We hope that our initiative will help change the scene for the country and for millions of our people,” Dr Kulkarni said.