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[Correspondence] Surgical palliative care in resource-limited settings

To relieve suffering in people is a universal aim of all medical and surgical specialties, yet a chasm exists between palliative and surgical disciplines. Every year about 40 million people need palliative services worldwide, but only 10% receive them.1 The need for palliative care is disproportionate to the density of health-care providers: 80% of those in need are in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs) where the health-care workforce is limited.1,2 In such areas, the surgical workforce might feel obligated to focus on patients with curable conditions rather than those with terminal conditions because it might seem too late to help the latter.

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