COVID-19, promotion and provision of palliative care: reaching out, accounting for linguistic diversity

Vissandjée B, Fernandez I, Durivage P, Freitas Z, Savignac P, Van Pevenage I. (2021, février)

Global Health Promotion

En ligne 24 février 2021

The combined forces of economic globalization and international migration have resulted in specific challenges to palliative care systems. The COVID-19 pandemic has and is still greatly affecting elder populations as well as those across the age continuum living with long-standing chronic conditions or with pre-existing diverse unmet needs. While health promotion and palliative care may appear to be conceptually opposing fields, we argue that palliative care can and should fit under the umbrella of the health promotion continuum. This commentary seeks to discuss the importance of linguistic literacy and communication imperatives in the context of access to palliative care, given the broad, diversified and sensitive scope of care. While the pandemic has demonstrated that the public health responses of migrant host societies are deeply intertwined with policies as well as local rules and constraints, the promotion and provision of safe, timely and appropriate palliative care can be achieved through a sensitive assessment of differential contexts of diversity. The pandemic has painfully illustrated the need for a strong, respectful and equitable working partnership within the professions as well as with the civic society in order for the palliative needs of those exposed to a sustained risk not to be forgotten.