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Die in Kerala, not in India

Die in Kerala, not in India

Is India one of the worst places in the world to die?, says so a study report. However, the southernmost State of the country, Kerala, has been kept aside from the bad image because of its provision of palliative care for patients with serious illnesses.

India has been ranked as one of the worst places in the world to die, but Kerala was praised for bucking up the trend by providing good end-of-life care, according to an 80-country "Quality of Death" study.

The 'Economic Intelligence Unit' report found the UK to be the best place in the world to die, with developing countries like India towards the bottom of the index of 80 countries.

India and China are ranked 67th and 71st respectively, while Taiwan has the highest rank in Asia, at sixth position.

However, it praised Kerala's provision of palliative care for patients with serious illnesses.

"While India ranks at the bottom of the Index in overall score, and performs badly on many indicators, Kerala, if measured on the same points, would buck the trend. With only 3 per cent of India's population, the tiny state provides two-thirds of India's palliative care services," said the 'Quality of Death: Ranking end-oflife care across the world' report.

"Moreover, the state has a formal palliative care policy in place (it is the only Indian state with such a policy) and its government provides funding for community-based care programmes," it said.

Palliative care advocates from developing countries as well as across the world are studying Kerala's potent combination of government support and civic involvement in end-of-life care, the report said.

The Quality of Death Index, commissioned by the Lien Foundation, a Singaporean philanthropic organisation, is based on qualitative and quantitative indicators and took interviews of over 120 palliative care experts from around the world.

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