(Hong Kong, 10 November 2012) The 5thAnnual Palliative Care Symposium for Health Care Workers in Chinese Population, jointly organized by the Faculty of Medicine at The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) and Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine at The University of Hong Kong (HKU) with the support of the Li Ka Shing Foundation ‘Heart of Gold’ Hong Kong Hospice Service Program, was held at the Li Ka Shing Medical Sciences Building in the Prince of Wales Hospital today (10 November). Officiating at the opening ceremony were Prof. T. F. Fok, Dean, Faculty of Medicine, CUHK; Prof. T. M. Chan, Associate Dean (External Relations), Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, HKU; Dr. Chan Yu, Project Manager, Li Ka Shing Foundation; and Dr. Cheung Wai Lun, Director of Cluster Services Division, Hospital Authority. The symposium brings together workers and researchers on palliative care in Chinese societies, as well as international renowned experts to share knowledge and experience in tackling the specific difficulties in carrying out end-of-life care programmes, which will in turn uplift the quality of hospice services to benefit the Chinese population.
Over 100 health care professionals from different backgrounds took part in the symposium. Dr. Bee Wee, Head of Palliative Care Research and Development and Senior Clinical Lecturer in Palliative Care, Sir Micheal Sobell House, University of Oxford, was invited to deliver a keynote speech titled ‘End-of-Life Care for Cancer Patients in Asia’ at the Symposium. She is a renowned speaker in the field of palliative care and pain management. Dr. Edward Cheung, Specialist in Palliative Medicine, Department of Medicine, United Christian Hospital; Dr. Lo Sing Hung, Specialist in Palliative Medicine, Department of Clinical Oncology, Tuen Mun Hospital; and Dr. Mansha Khemlani, Specialist in Palliative Medicine, Department of Medicine, Caritas Medical Centre, also shared their experiences in conducting end-of-life care pathway in Hong Kong. Various experts also exchanged their views on holistic care and resources allocation of palliative care among cancer patients.
The organizers are indebted to the continued support from the Foundation and its sponsorship for this symposium. The Foundation aims at contributing to society by helping those in need to build a better life. Its munificent support in health care has benefited countless patients in Hong Kong, mainland China and worldwide. In 1998, the Foundation pioneered free hospice care services in the mainland with the establishment of the ‘Heart of Gold’ Hospice Service Programme. The Foundation’s total donation of over $450 million has supported 42 hospice centres in the mainland and Hong Kong, serving 20,000 patients annually and benefiting 140,000 cancer patients.
The organizers are also thankful to the Hospital Authority which provides patients with comprehensive palliative care services including treatment and support through multidisciplinary collaboration in its palliative care centres.