Global & Disaster Medicine

Opiophobia in developing nations: Where is palliative care for the world’s poor?

NY Times

“…..Uganda has implemented an innovative solution. Here, liquid morphine is produced by a private charity overseen by the government. And with doctors in short supply, the law lets even nurses prescribe morphine after specialized training.

About 11 percent of Ugandans needing morphine get it. Inadequate as that is, it makes Uganda a standout not just in Africa, but in the world…….”

“…..The United States…..produces or imports 31 times as much narcotic pain-relievers it needs whether in legal or illegal form: morphine, hydrocodone, heroin, methadone, fentanyl and so on.

Haiti, by contrast, gets slightly less than 1 percent of what it needs. And Nigeria, on a per-capita basis, gets only a quarter of what Haiti gets: 0.2 percent of its need……”


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