According to a blog on the site ‘VSO International‘, the policy for caregivers will acknowledge the importance of community- and home-based carers who often receive no remuneration or stipend for what they do.
The author reports that at an annual review held in Mozambique at the Assembly of the Republic in 2012, it was unanimously voted to commit to legislate for a draft care providers policy.
It is widely believed that a policy for caregivers will help to reduce the burden of care on women and girls providing home-based care, as well as acknowledging the importance of caregivers in society. The blog points out that many care providers are often stigmatised in their communities and ignored when they visit health centres for appointments or to collect medication.
In March 2012 the UK Consortium on AIDS and International Development published a policy briefing ‘Past due: remuneration and social protection for caregivers in the context of HIV and AIDS’. The paper drew attention to the fact that in sub-Saharan Africa, an estimated 90% of care for people living with HIV and AIDS is done in the home by family or community-based caregivers.
The policy paper considers who caregivers are and the impact that their work has – at a personal, community and global level. The briefing also suggests models of remuneration that donors, national governments and programmatic NGOs can use to compensate caregivers for the work that they provide.
The policy briefing states: “There are many secondary caregivers who are currently called ‘volunteers’ simply because they do not get paid. However, they do not choose to volunteer and would like to be remunerated for their work. These caregivers have a right to a living wage as do all workers. Given the economic constraints facing many of the countries with a high burden of HIV, it is understood that a sustainable remuneration solution may not be immediate. But this should never be an excuse to avoid the issue. A clear and time-bound path to remuneration is critical.”
Read the full blog post on the VSO website.