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Integrating palliative care with HIV care in two Ugandan districts using a collaborative quality improvement approach
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This report discusses palliative care, which is any care or treatment that aims to reduce the severity of pain and other symptoms, alleviate suffering, and/or improve the quality of life for people facing serious illnesses. Uganda has made considerable progress in the field of palliative care, including the establishment of policies and guidelines by the Ministry of Health (MoH) to support implementation of palliative care treatments recommended by the World Health Organization.
The USAID Health Care Improvement Project (HCI) teamed with the Palliative Care Association of Uganda (PCAU) to provide introductory training in palliative care and improvement methods to health workers and community volunteers. Staff competencies continued to be strengthened over the life of the intervention through regular clinical mentorship and coaching by MoH and HCI staff at all participating sites.
As community awareness about the availability of pain management grew and pain management practices in the facilities improved, the demand for services increased, and there was up to a nine-fold increase in the number of HIV patients identified as having pain.