Emanoel Lee Prize 2014 awarded for account of palliative care work placement in Malawi

Categories: Education.

The work placement between February and April 2014 was part of her final year elective placement.

Ndi Moyo (Chichewan for ‘with life’) is a hospice providing outpatient palliative care in Salima and the surrounding area. The most common conditions affecting the patients who use the centre re Kaposi’s sarcoma, cervical cancer (both HIV/AIDS related) and oesophageal cancer. The high incidence of the latter is linked to nitrate fertiliser contamination of drinking water.

On her arrival, the reality of working in a resource poor country hit home quickly.

As well as her interaction with patients, Rachel recounts her input into improving chemotherapy records to help keep track of patients attending regular treatments and antibiotic prescribing to help diagnose by drawing up new guidelines for the staff and putting in place new systems.

Rachel says the elective placement allowed her to develop s a clinician: “I am now far more aware of treating the symptoms that a patient is experiencing without getting completely side-tracked about getting a diagnosis ‘label’.

“I am much more confident whilst working, and am realising just how much I have learned and developed over the last three years of medical school.”

The judging panel praised Rachel’s essay which, they say, is “thorough, thoughtful and caring”. The judges were impressed by her willingness to work in a palliative care setting when it had not initially appealed to her.

Rachel receives prize money of £200.

The Emanoel Lee Essay Prize is open to final-year clinical medics at Green Templeton, all of whom write a report following their final-year elective, as a condition of the travel grant awarded to them.

Emanoel Lee was a highly-gifted colo-rectal and breast surgeon with an international reputation for his many contributions to surgical techniques, teaching and research. He was a founding member of Common Room of Green College. The Prize was established by his widow Janine and his two sons Paul and Ruben.

  Read Rachel Carey’s winning essay

This article first appeared on the Green Templeton College website.

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