Catherine McAuley hospice in Muhoroni, Kisumu County was started in 2008 in a hospital set up by Sisters of Mercy led by Sr Vincent Finnerty.
The Hospice was started at St. Vincent de Paul’s Mission Hospital as a result of rising incidence of HIV related cancers like cervical cancer and Kaposi’s sarcoma that most patients were presenting with.
Caroline Onyango is a Kenyan Registered Nurse with a Diploma in Higher Education in Palliative Care and part of the team offering care at the hospice.
“The hospice operates as an inpatient facility with 23 beds offering total pain management among other psychosocial support services,” says Caroline.
She says that other than cancer, other cases attended to at the Hospice include cancer of the bone, anal rectal conditions and cancer of the oesophagus.
“We manage pain using oral morphine, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and tramadol with liquid morphine going for five shillings per ml,” says Caroline.
The Hospice also has a psychosocial support group for those living with HIV/AIDS.
Catherine Mcauley Hospice has grown to admit an average of five patients monthly from one patient at commencement.
The team of four, including a Clinical Officer working at the Hospice have undergone a five day introduction to palliative care training with Caroline advancing to the Higher Diploma level.
The Hospice serves four counties namely Siaya, Homa Bay, Kericho and Nandi and the staff present are doing their best to ensure best services to patients admitted at the Hospice