Following previous years this is 5th time for the Aastha Foundation in association with Hospice Bangladesh to organize Palliative Care Award. Now professionals also wait for this event as it is exclusively for them, for recognizing the respect, dignity, and love they deserve.

Palliative care is a very specialized branch in the health sector that still needs to be developed. To make it available for everyone we need more professionals to engage in this noble profession. This Award event was initiated to inspire and motivate the professionals who are working which will inspire others to join.

Since 2017, every year the award category, as well as the number of award sponsors, is also increasing. In this year the nominee for the different category was increased tremendously which indicate its success to organize and giving satisfaction to the award committee

Following the previous year, this year in 2021, the event was held with very limited participants at Gulshan Club on 21st December due to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. The number of total participants was 40 and the room capacity was more than 200. All safety measures during the COVID-19 pandemic were maintained properly. The program was live on social media.

The awardee in different categories follows:

  1. Asma Rahman Palliative Care Institutional Nurse Award- Rokshana Parvin
  2. Mojib Rahman Palliative Care Institutional Nurse Award- Umme Habiba
  3. Late Choudhury A.K.M. Shamsuddoha Palliative Care Institutional Nurse Award- Rahima Khatun
  4. Late A. N. Amanullah Palliative Care Institutional Nurse Award- Farjana Akter
  5. Late Kathleen Antoinette Hossain Palliative Care Institutional Nurse Award- Bhaskar Mondal
  6. Late Shehruq Raise Mawla Palliative Home Care Nurse Award- Shirina Akter
  7. Late Shehruq Raise Mawla Palliative Home Care Nurse Award- Jahanara Akther
  8. Late Farida Khanam Palliative Home Care Nurse Award- Sanjida Akhter
  9. Late Farida Khanam Palliative Home Care Nurse Award- Saif
  10. Late Farida Khanam Palliative Home Care Nurse Award- Munia Aktar
  11. Mojib Rahman Palliative Doctor Award- Kazi Maksoda Akter
  12. DR Md Abdul Mabud Palliative Doctor Award- S M Rezanur Rahman
  13. Late Jubidur Kabir Palliative Doctor Award- Muhammad Rafiqul Islam
  14. Late Mohammed Abu Naser Palliative Doctor Award- Md. Minhazur Rahman
  15. Late Choudhury A.K.M. Shamsuddoha Palliative Doctor Award- Tahmina Rahman
  16. Late Mrs. Mamtaz Begum Palliative Care Volunteer Award- Safia Choudhury
  17. Late Alfaaz Hossain Palliative Care Volunteer Award- Jostna Rani Mondol
  18. Late Syed Abul Khair Mohammed Delwar Hussain Palliative Care Leadership Award- Salma Choudhury, ASHIC Foundation

In 2021, another new category was introduced “Palliative Care Leadership Award” to acknowledge to show gratitude towards the great people who take initiatives to establish palliative care in Bangladesh. For the first time, this award was given to Salma Choudhury who introduced palliative care for the first time with Children Palliative Care “ASHIC Foundation”.

The special guest of the event was Prof. Nezamudin Ahmed (President, Bangladesh Palliative Care Association, Founder Director, Palliative Care Society of Bangladesh), Baby Rani Karmakar (Joint Secretary, Economic Relations Division, Ministry of Finance, People’s Republic of Bangladesh) and Prof. Dr. AKM Amirul Morshed Khasru, Additional Director General (Admin), Directorate General of Medical Education, Ministry of Health & Family Affairs. Another legend one of the pioneers in pediatric palliative care of Bangladesh “Prof. Zohora  Jameela Khan, Head of Oncology Square Hospital Ltd “Syed Akram Hossain Sir, Dr. Shahinur Kabir(Founder of Hospice Bangladesh and Aastha Foundation) , DR. Rifat Akhter (President, Aastha Foundation),  Dr. Sazia Afrin (Chairman of Hospice Bangladesh), Dr. Mostofa Kamal Chowdhury Adil (Assistant professor, Palliative Medicine, BSMMU) were also present at the award event and they gave their valuable speeches.

In the beginning, Dr. Shahihur Kabir gave his speech. He said that Palliative Care started with the banner of the “Farida Khanam Foundation Palliative Care Nurse Award’ to recognize the sincere role of Homecare Nurse. He also told that we need to show honor for nurses, doctors, and every professional so that more people will inspire to work in this sector. At last, he thanked everyone who worked behind to make the event successful. Rifat Akhter in her speech emphasized the importance of palliative care for cancer patients in any stage of their disease. She nicely explained that there should not remain any confusion about when to start palliative care. She also told the Aastha Foundation to continue its activities to increase awareness regarding palliative care through organizing different programs. She urged community people to come forward and play their vital role in palliative care because without them the establishment of palliative care would not be possible. Prof. Dr. Zohora Jameela Khan said that no one is out of the box in palliative care, everyone in society is important and should be in palliative care. Special Guest Baby Rani Karmakar (Joint Secretary, Finance Division, People’s Republic of Bangladesh) in her speech told that palliative care is very important in Bangladesh to establish. She also told that it will help in the job market for professionals who are working in this sector as well as family members of patients. Prof. Nezamuddin sir said that every year he tried to be present at this event as it is the special program of Palliative care that always touches him. As a physician, he always feels special to support such patients. He also thanked Dr. Kabir to take such different initiatives to bring every professional under one umbrella. Prof. Nezam requested Baby Rani Karmakar to do something at Government Level. Prof. Syed Akram told that he took initiative to start a palliative care unit at Square Hospitals Ltd and he feels very proud to see the success of that unit. He said that every professional in palliative care is very motivated which is the most striking part to give its success in Bangladesh. Dr. Adil in his speech urged everyone to come forward and work together so that we can soon establish Palliative Care in Bangladesh.

All speakers gave thanks to the Aastha foundation to organize such an event and congratulated every awardee. We this award will motivate the professionals, increase awareness and make positive changes in society which will give success in the establishment of palliative care in Bangladesh.