For the first time in India, the Government of Kerala has declared a Pain and Palliative Care policy to guide and facilitate the development of community based home care initiatives under the leadership of Local Self Governments. The Arogyakeralam Palliative care project formulated last year in consonance with the policy of the Govt of Kerala has been quite successful in initiating such services with community participation in a large number of LSGI in all parts of Kerala. The initiative under the project aims to identify patients in need, offer guidance for appropriate treatment, provide care at home for the bed ridden and incurably ill and equip the primary health care system to provide care including medicines to the ‘socio economically’ backward patients. As part of this project, Doctors, district coordinators, nurses and auxiliary nurses have been appointed to coordinate home care and other programmes.

The Director of Health Services, Government of Kerala issued an order (No. PH 6/068463 dated 29th July, 2009) incorporating palliative care into the primary health care system in the state.

Around 400 gramapanchayats have established home care programs for bed ridden patients under the project.