Palliative care in Africa- the next 50 years
12 October 2012
Dr Amandua Jacinto, Commissioner Clinical Services, Ministry of Health, Uganda
As Uganda celebrates its jubilee anniversary of independence, discussions arise around the next 50 years of palliative care in Africa.
On the Africa edition of ehospice, Uganda's Director of Clinical Services, Dr Amandua Jacinto, reflected on the direction palliative care needs to take to address patient needs in Africa over the next 50 years.
Dr Jacinto referred to the theme of this year’s World Hospice and Palliative Care Day – "Living to the end: palliative care for an ageing population” - in his call for a consideration of Africa's older population.
He expressed concern over the "steady rise" of Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in Africa, and pointed to the lack of palliative care professionals on the continent. Dr Jacinto voiced the need to develop a cadre of palliative care specialists in Africa, as well as palliative care policy and legislation.
He praised Uganda as a "model of palliative care", and encouraged other countries to learn from this example.
Dr Jacinto cautioned that there is a neglect of emphasis around palliative care in favour of a focus on treatment and prevention.
He finished with a personal appeal for "African countries to come together to include palliative care into political agendas" and said that he was "looking forward to a time when palliative care can be discussed by ministries of health and policy makers across Africa to have the same consideration as HIV, malaria, maternal health, and other health services."
Read the full article on the Africa edition of ehospice.