I'm leading the Lancet Commission on the Value of Death, and we are keen to hear from as many people as possible, particularly those from low and middle income countries.
Our basic idea is that modern health care has developed an unhealthy relationship with death, and we want to explore ways of making it healthier.
We have created a website that includes the commentary that we published in the Lancet announcing the Commission, the membership of the Commission, and our first attempt to describe the problem we are considering.
We'd welcome comments on the description, and here is a link:
First draft of the problem we want to explore and respond to in the Value of Death Commission
'Einstein said that if he had an hour to solve a problem he would spend 55 minutes defining it and five minutes thinking of solutions. We would like to agree on the problem we are considering and will welcome comments. We will keep developing the text of the problem until we are satisfied. So please comment and ask others who you think might be interested to contribute...'
I hope to hear from some of you.
HIFA profile: Richard Smith is chair of the board of trustees of the icddr,b (formerly International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease, Bangladesh) and chair of Patients Know Best, an organisation that gives patients control of their health and social care records. He was previously director of the UnitedHealth Chronic Disease Initiative, a programme with the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute to create centres in low and middle income countries to counter NCD (cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). The centres are in China, Bangladesh, India (2), Tunisia, Kenya, South Africa, the Mexico, Central America, Peru, and the Southern Cone. PACK comes from the South Africa centre. Richard is also chair of the Cochrane Library Oversight Committee and was formerly Editor of the BMJ and Chief Executive of the BMJ Publishing Group. richardswsmith AT yahoo.co.uk