KEHPCA is encouraging Maua Methodist Hospital to continue to shine and strive to be a center of excellence in palliative care. Maua Methodist Hospital has been in the forefront in provision of Palliative Care (PC) in Meru County since 2002. A team of two; Dr. Claire and Mr. Gitonga were determined to start palliative care services based on the growing need within the region especially to persons living with HIV/AIDs who needed care and were neglected & stigmatized by the communities.
Over the 20 years in provision of care, the facility has grown to become a learning center for palliative care by health care workers and the public across the Country. For the last 9 years, the facility has been conducting the ten days introduction to palliative care training for health care professionals, thrice (3) a year.
As stated by the staff during a visit by KEHPCA on 25th November 2022, amongst their greatest impact has been; integration of palliative care services with other services in the facility both inpatient and outpatient. The facility prides itself in having a big number of dedicated, passionate and trained health care professionals in palliative care ranging from Doctors, Pharmacists Clinical Officers and Nurses, making it easier to provide quality services to persons in need of care. Every month, the facility provides care to an average of 50 persons in need PC services, 4% being children.
As the team continues to train more health care workers on provision of quality palliative care services across the County, they hope to change the narrative and attitude among health care workers on palliative care.
“Some HCPs think PC is only be offered by a particular team in a facility, others will come for trainings with the wrong attitude on palliative care” “however we work on changing that narrative and by the end of the training we get positive feedback; especially after the trainees undertake placement practicum sessions and home visits.” stated one of the PC staff. Home visits as student placement offer a different approach on provision of palliative care. This leads to huge attitude change. Case discussions are also emphasized in addition to didactic sessions during the training. The institution uses the MOH National Palliative Care Training Curriculum for HIV&AIDs, Cancer and Other life-threatening illnesses.
The following recommendations were outlined to enhance provision of PC services;
(i) Peer to peer learning with other PC providing facilities; to learn new and emerging approaches in offering care services as well as documenting best practices in PC
(ii) Linkages with other partners that will enhance the provision of care such as stoma world – support the provision of colostomy bags.