Education and training are key to enabling access to hospice care, not just in Uganda but also to the rest of Africa. It is essential that palliative care is introduced to all health professionals as well as to the community. We provide a wide range of training programmes for community volunteers and professional health workers
Hospice Africa Uganda (HAU) is now a proven model for Palliative care that can be implemented across much of Africa. However in Uganda there are still may people who fall through the net and do not get access to the care they need at end of life. HAU has provided tailored education and training programmes in 2 education centres – Kampala and Mbarara to over 7000 health workers who come not just from Uganda but from all over Africa (3000 health professionals, 3000 medical students and over 500 hundred in diploma and degree programmes).
HAU have used the modular approach to provide in-service trainings for all health workers. These modules include; Pain and symptom assessment and management, psychosocial cultural and spiritual issues and end of life care as well as Training of Trainers. Since 2006, we have been holding a 9 week programme for Tutors in Health Schools throughout Uganda so that training within undergraduate programmes can be extended to all the health professionals of the future.
The training aims to build specialist palliative care competencies. Initially, the target groups were doctors, clinical officers, registered nurses/midwives, pharmacists and dispensers working in the specified HIV and AIDS organisations and in oncology.
Core short courses range from 3 days to 7 for: health professionals, allied professionals, carers, community volunteers, spiritual leaders and traditional healers.
Today HAU also provides courses for undergraduate medical and nursing students and health professionals already in practice. Our new purpose built Education Centre was funded by Irish donors (including Irish Aid and KPMG). The Education Department was recognized by the National Council for Higher Education as a Tertiary Institute in 2009, now called “Institute of Hospice and Palliative Care in Africa” (IHPCA). Accredited by the National Council for Higher Education in Uganda as an institution of Higher learning the IHPCA aims to create multi disciplinary teams in NGOs/health service providers.
Long courses were commenced in 2003. The 9 month residential Diploma in Clinical Palliative Care (DCPC), equips nurses and clinical officers to deliver specialized palliative care and to prescribe morphine. Uganda is the first country to increase prescribers for those in need in this way. Uganda and other African countries are very short of doctors who are the only prescribers in other countries. 131 have successfully completed this course since 2004.
The Bachelor’s degree programme commenced in July 2010. This equips our graduates in Africa with specialist knowledge, experience and status.