Background Monitoring the development of palliative care (PC) illustrates the capacity of health systems to respond to the needs of people experiencing serious health-related suffering. Aim To analyse comparatively the situation of PC in the countries of the Easter Mediterranean region using context-specific indicators. Method An online questionnaire with 15 context-specific PC indicators investigating service provision, use of medicines, policy, education, and vitality was designed. Authors Institution 1 nominated in-country experts to complete the survey. Data were analysed using a comparative description of indicators per domain and a multivariate analysis. Results In-country experts were identified in 17/22 countries. 12/17 contributed to the survey. In total, 117 specialized PC services were identified. Specialized services per population ranges from 0.09 per 100,000 inhabitants in Lebanon and Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait; to zero services in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. On average, opioid consumption was 2.40 mg/capita/year. National PC strategies were reported in nine countries. In six countries, PC is officially accredited either as a specialty or sub-specialty, and PC mandatory courses are implemented in 36% of medical schools and 46% of nursing schools. National PC associations were documented in six countries. A higher pattern of development was identified in Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Lebanon, Qatar. Conclusions Despite a higher development in the Arabian Peninsula, the region is characterised by a very low provision of specialized PC services and opioid consumption. Policy improvements represent an opportunity to improve access to PC.