Why does death prefer to hold a scythe rather than my hand?

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Ms. Najuah Sael Basheer Atari and Ms. Gabriela Sulzbach Solanho, two medical student at Universidade Positivo-Curitiba, from Paraná, Brazil. They are affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.


Universal Health Coverage (CUS) is a system that guarantees minimum living conditions without the need of a financial cost on the part of the population. It should cover treatments for heart failure, AIDS ( Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrom ), depression, diabetes, among other comorbidities. It is a fact that CUS is unable to bear with absolutely all diseases. However, a fact is placed in check, followed by a paradox: According to the World Health Organization ( WHO ), half of the world population does not have access to CUS, but 100% of the population has a finite life. So why is the greatest certainty in the universe not covered in a concrete way within the CUS, much less covers the entire population?

So to defend for the terminality of life to be included in the minimum health criteria, palliative care (CP) is conceptualized: a multidisciplinary and comprehensive care for patients with an incurable disease. In other words, working with CP is also to develop comprehensive health care, as it is based on the totality of the individual: in its physical, psychological, social, economic and family aspects (and isn’t that also the meaning of CUS ?!).

So for PCs to be included in the CUS, it is necessary a multidisciplinary team working on behalf of the individual in order not only to ensure better relief from suffering, but also to awaken the philosophical feeling of finitude of life, since from the moment that understands the inevitability of death, if it lives with more quality and more intensity, studies indicate that this type of lifestyle prevents depression, heart disease, among others. In other words, even if the CUS is burdened with costs, covering PCs can relieve some of these inputs!

In fact, for the process of dying without pain to be seen with more priority, it is necessary to include this agenda in health schools (and especially medical schools) during clinical practice. Because it is also emphasized that the function of medicine is to save lives, as if dying was a failure or an error, when in fact it is the only absolute certainty. Little is taught at university about pain relief, but much is emphasized about the doctor’s herculean power. This creates professionals who practice medicine to feed their own ego, and not for the relief of human suffering (this being, paradoxically, part of Hippocrates’ oath).

In addition, for this inclusion to exist, it is necessary that government entities exercise their role of representation and start to guarantee this aggregation as a priority. So there is a need for the political awakening of the population to exercise their citizenship more humanely. Many vote to improve the current situation in the country, but that is not enough, it is necessary to vote beyond the present, vote to live and even die better. Living well is a political act, dying with dignity is a revolutionary act.

About the author

Najuah Sael Basheer Atari, 23 years-old student 3rd yead medical student at Universidade Positivo-Curitiba, from Paraná, affiliated with IFMSA-Positivo in 2019. She believes in equality of gender and a medicine based in evidence and humanity and palliative care. That’s 3 points is not only her ideals, but also the minimal condition for a better world.

Gabriela Sulzbach Solanho, 19 year-old student 3rd year medical student at Universidade Positivo-Curitiba, from Paraná, affiliated with IFMSA-Positivo in 2019. She is a member of Cancerology Academic League of Curitiba and local coordinator of IFMSA Brazil Positivo. In addition, she is interested in issues about humanized medicine, palliative care in a view beyond death, besides scientific initiation.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Art has the power to change the world, says this renowned Iranian muralist

European Commission welcomes the positive assessment about how it has managed the EU budget

New seat projections for the next European Parliament EU28

FROM THE FIELD: Liberia boosts efforts to guard against rising seas

3 ways to protect your mental health during – and after – COVID-19

Protecting the ocean is key to fighting climate change

MEPs call for binding 2030 targets for materials use and consumption footprint

More than one million sexually transmitted infections occur every day: WHO

Brexit: visa-free access to the EU for UK nationals and to the UK for Europeans

‘Good enough’ global cooperation is key to our survival

5 key themes for reforming the EU, as elections loom

Mental Health: Role of the individual for their well-being in the pandemic

EU leaders prepare timetable and structure for EU budget negotiations

Whale populations are slowly recovering – this is why

EU’s VAT system further equipped to tackle fraud in e-commerce and to help small businesses grow

State aid: Commission approves €380 million German rescue aid to Condor

Member States agree to Commission proposal to support Irish beef producers impacted by market uncertainty

Got the blues? Head for some green spaces

This is how Copenhagen plans to go carbon-neutral by 2025

Meet Cipta: the comic book hero using her powers to tackle bullying in schools

Further reforms will promote a stronger and more inclusive Hungarian economy

UN chief appeals for calm as Mali presidential election draws to a close

Hatred ‘a threat to everyone’, urges Guterres calling for global effort to end xenophobia and ‘loathsome rhetoric’

Health inequalities in the 21st century

Here’s why infrastructure will make or break our response to climate change

Autonomous weapons that kill must be banned, insists UN chief

Mobile Technology saving lives, the way forward

Sassoli to EU institutions: “Be brave on EU recovery plan”

Rule of law in Hungary: Parliament calls on the EU to act

Mental health: fighting the hidden pandemic

5 key concepts for blockchain newbies

Do doctors need to know their patients’ sexual orientation and gender identity?

On World Health Day, new report says the world needs 6 million more nurses

More women than ever before are running for political office in the US

Climate change: cutting the good by the root?

Creative Europe: 30 years of support to European films and cultural and creative media works

Commission proposes to purchase up to 300 million additional doses of BioNTech-Pfizer vaccine

What can the military teach us about keeping the lights on?

Venezuela migrant crisis begs a ‘coherent, predictable and harmonized’ response: UNHCR

Young people are not a nameless, faceless mass. So why do we treat them as such?

Commission presents far-reaching anti-tax evasion measures

Getting people with disabilities into work requires data

Why cybersecurity should be standard due diligence for investors

UN chief hails Libyan leaders’ agreement to hold general election

UN chief appeals to G7 leaders for ‘strong commitment’ and political will to tackle climate emergency

Illegal fishing: EU lifts Taiwan’s yellow card following reforms

Vulnerable children face ‘dire and dangerous’ situation on Greek island reception centres, UNICEF warns

To win combat against HIV worldwide, ‘knowledge is power’, says UNAIDS report

Antitrust: Commission consults stakeholders on guidance for national courts when handling disclosure information

How digital is your country? Europe needs Digital Single Market to boost its digital performance

New neighbours: Could Venus really be home to alien life?

Coronavirus: Commission proposes €4.5 million to support over 5,000 dismissed tourism workers or self-employed in Estonia

Moving from a promise made in Sweden towards hope for peace in Yemen

An alternative to the future of antimicrobial therapy

Here’s how the EU is doing on gender equality

FROM THE FIELD: Enslaved Guatemalan indigenous women wait for reparations

UN boosts humanitarian appeal to help tackle Zimbabwe’s ‘worst-ever’ hunger crisis

Norway is returning Easter Island artefacts to Chile (Will Britain ever return the marbles to Greece?)

As the year closes out, UN political chief talks the art of diplomacy – and crises to watch in 2019.

Refugees in Greece: MEPs demand solidarity, warn about impact of health crisis

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s