Bridging the Gap: Transforming Knowledge into Action
July 8-12, 2006, Washington, DC, USA
Tuesday, 11 July 2006 - 1:30 PM 192-1
Contribution of Authors from Low & Middle-Income Countries to Palliative Care Research
Samy A. Alsirafy, MD and Mohammad Z. Al-Shahri, MD. Section of Palliative Care Medicine; King Faisal Cancer Centre, King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre, P.O. Box 3354, Riyadh 11211, Saudi Arabia
Objective: The World Health Organization recognizes Palliative Care (PC) as an essential component of cancer control world wide. Research is essential for the establishment and development of appropriate PC services. This paper aims at roughly estimating the contribution of researchers from lower-income countries to the field of PC. Methods: The MEDLINE database was used to review publications in four palliative care periodicals over a period of 3 years (2002 through 2004). The reviewed journals included The American Journal of Hospice & Palliative Medicine, Journal of Palliative Care, Journal of Palliative Medicine, and Palliative Medicine. The address and institutional affiliation were used to determine the country of origin for the 1st author. Countries were grouped according to the World Bank classification by income. Results: The country represented by the 1st author was determined in 807 publications. The 1st author represented a low-income country in only 1% of publications, a middle-income country in 0.4% & a high-income in 98.6%. Continental distribution of the 1st author was 3 (0.4 %) for Africa, 32 (4 %) for Asia, 225 (27.9 %) for Europe, 506 (62.7 %) for Northern America, 39 (4.8 %) for Oceania, and 2 (0.2 %) for Latin America. The results match with the observation of dramatically low per capita morphine consumption in lower-income countries compared to high-income countries. These are indirect indicators of underdeveloped PC services in countries that needed them the most. International PC bodies may need to play a more active role in promoting PC services and research in lower-income countries.