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Care of Dying Is Outlined by W.H.O.

The 51-page document was aimed not at individual doctors, but at national health ministers, said one of its authors, Dr. Cecilia Sepúlveda, palliative care expert with the health organization.

It contains formulas for calculating how many people in a country are in need of such care.

It also outlines typical obstacles to providing it: national laws that make it hard for pharmacists to stock powerful painkillers, lack of training for doctors and nurses, and fears of addiction on the part of patients.

It also cites countries that offer good end-of-life care despite national poverty - mostly by having it done at home, by relatives given modest amounts of training.

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