Navigation Links
Palliative care skills training needed for health-care staff in sub-Saharan Africa
Date:4/22/2009

A new study, led by Lucy Selman and colleagues from King's College London, has found that patients with incurable, progressive diseases and their family carers in sub-Saharan Africa often do not receive enough information about the patient's disease and its management, which impacts negatively on their ability to cope with illness. The results of the study have been published online by the BMJ today.

The study was conducted in collaboration with five palliative care services in South Africa and Uganda and the palliative care associations of South Africa (HPCA) and Africa (APCA).

A major finding from interviews with 90 patients and 38 family carers was that healthcare staff did not provide enough information to help patients and carers understand the disease, its causes and symptoms, as well as its treatment and management. Patients and carers also felt insufficiently informed about the financial and social support available to them. These information gaps can cause anxiety for the patient and affect the family's ability to provide good patient care.

Patients and carers drew on a wide range of sources for information, including friends and family, peers with a similar condition and the media. Although patients and carers appreciated efforts made by their palliative care team to provide information, many still had unanswered questions.

For example, a patient with HIV reported that hospital staff never properly explained his diagnosis, likely symptoms and future care. Other patients talked about not receiving the results of blood tests, and described the trauma of being broken bad news in an insensitive manner. Carers reported not being told the patient's diagnosis directly, but learning it from his or her medical notes or from simply being sent on an HIV education course.

'The poor knowledge and lack of information provided impacted negatively on patients' and carers' ability to cope with their situation. For both groups, not having the information they needed was related to anxiety regarding the disease and the future', said Lucy Selman, Research Associate in the Department of Palliative Care, Policy & Rehabilitation at King's.

'The study highlights that it is crucial for all clinical staff to receive generalist training in palliative care skills, including communication and basic counselling. Communication with patients and carers should be open and honest, and records be kept of the discussions between healthcare staff and patients regarding their condition. It is also essential that services work closely with families and volunteer carers in the community, empowering them to provide the care the patient needs, including sensitive and accurate communication.'

This study is the first to explore the information needs of patients and carers attending palliative care services in Africa, identify information needs and understand past experiences of communicating with healthcare staff. Patients' diagnoses included cancer (28 cases), HIV infection (61) and motor neurone disease (1).


'/>"/>

Contact: Melanie Haberstroh
melanie.haberstroh@kcl.ac.uk
44-207-848-3076
King's College London
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Missouri Hospice & Palliative Care Association Recognizes Volunteers in Hospice With Heart of Hospice Awards Luncheon
2. The Department of Pain Medicine and Palliative Care at Beth Israel Medical Center is Named 2009 Center of Excellence Award Winner by the American Pain Society
3. Grants to Increase Access to Hospice and Palliative Care for Rural and Homeless Veterans Awarded by National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
4. San Diego Medical Community Receives First-Ever Accredited Palliative Medicine Fellowship Program
5. New Palliative Medicine Hotline to Call San Diego Home
6. Most Off-Label Cancer Drug Use for Palliative Care
7. Palliative Care Programs Could Boost Hospitals Bottom Line
8. Integrating palliative care for dementia into primary care
9. End-stage dementia patients deserve the same access to palliative care as people with cancer
10. The Norma F. Pfriem International Fellowship in Hospice and Palliative Care Nursing
11. Beyond the terminal: Palliative care
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... ... More than a third of American adults are considered obese, says the ... increased attention in recent years, as an article published May 18th on ... people are familiar with the basic requirements of maintaining a healthy diet and exercise ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... ... With over 60 percent of acute stroke survivors being left unable to ... in the rehabilitation process has steadily increased. Ekso Bionics had been working to help ... stroke. , Ekso Bionics has now received clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... May 27, 2016 , ... ... is bolstered by inspiring human interest stories, courtesy of leaders in the nursing ... tech within the industry, from leading advocates and associations—namely Jones & Bartlett Learning. ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... 2016 , ... There are many ways to cook a hot dog, but ... Americans prefer their dogs straight off the grill. Of the 90 percent of Americans ... to cook a hot dog, far outpacing other cooking methods such as steaming (12 ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... ... Connor Sports, through its Connor Cares initiative, will continue to expand ... Tour that will commemorate the Indiana Fever legend’s hall-of-fame career and final WNBA ... levels of the game, Connor Sports has committed to a significantly increased focus on ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/27/2016)... -- The healthcare sector is large and ... falling under its umbrella.  A rather overlooked sector are ... about, these healthcare companies are still trying to prove ... by far the largest consumer of the healthcare market ... Nutranomics Inc. (OTC: NNRX), KollagenX Corp. (OTCQB: KGNX), Bioelectronics ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... , May 26, 2016 Since ... matured into an essential life science tool for conducting ... applications. BCC Research reveals in its new report that ... growth phase, one powered by a range of new ...      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140723/694805 ) , ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... , May 25, 2016  Zymo Research Corp. ... their new reference materials that help researchers obtain ... collection to analyses. The rapid growth of the ... researchers to have standard methods to improve the ... Biases inherently exist at every step of the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: