Sara Ray
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Living with cancer: Sara's story

The lack of access to pain relief for dying patients around the world is a public health emergency according to doctors specialising in caring for people who are terminally ill.

The BBC has seen figures suggesting almost 17 million people died in unnecessary pain in 2012, partly because governments refused to allow them access to powerful painkillers such as morphine.

The Worldwide Palliative Care Alliance says the restrictions on these drugs are in place because of exaggerated fears about patients becoming addicted.

Sara Ray, a 69-year-old woman from the UK, was diagnosed with a rare type of lung cancer called mesothelioma in 2012.

Before her death earlier this year, Sara spoke to BBC News about dealing with mortality and staying positive.

  • 02 Jun 2014