The Lien Centre for Palliative Care (LCPC) was founded in 2008. The Lien Foundation’s decision to fund the development of an academic centre to support palliative care education and research was a timely and strategic decision because Palliative Medicine was recognized the previous year as a medical subspecialty in Singapore. This paved the way for palliative care research and local training of Palliative Medicine specialists.
LCPC was formed through a collaboration of 4 parties: the Lien Foundation as the philanthropic donor, the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School as the academic home for the Centre, the National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS) which provided the policy guidance and support for education and research, and SingHealth which provided policy guidance and support at the cluster level.
“To do our job properly, we need to fill in the gaps in knowledge and increase our understanding of the preferences of the dying in Singapore. I therefore welcome the setting up of the Lien Centre of Palliative Care at Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School. I hope your research will deepen our understanding of the needs and cultural differences between the ethnic communities in Singapore. We welcome your deeper insights into the needs and wants of the terminally ill here.
This will help set standards in care for the dying and provide a foundation for the development of advanced care planning guidelines. It is my hope that the Lien Centre will, in due course, develop into a regional institute for Palliative Care Research and Training.
…getting end-of-life care right lies at the heart of what it means to be a civilized society. Society should make this a priority. It is interesting that while death is the only certainty in life, many people do not think about what they want to accomplish before the end comes and how they want to depart this life. I suppose many just drift through life and do not plan ahead. I hope the Lien Centre will help more to stop drifting and start planning.”
(Khaw Boon Wan, Minister for Health 14 Oct 2008 at opening of the Lien Centre for Palliative Care)