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Tracheostomy home care: in a resource-limited setting
  1. A Vanker1,
  2. S Kling1,
  3. J R Booysen2,
  4. D Rhode1,
  5. P Goussard1,
  6. L Heyns1,
  7. R P Gie1
  1. 1Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Stellenbosch University, Tygerberg Children's Hospital, Tygerberg, South Africa
  2. 2Department of Social Work, Tygerberg Hospital, Tygerberg, South Africa
  1. Correspondence to Dr A Vanker, Faculty of Health Sciences, Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Stellenbosch University, Tygerberg Children's Hospital, PO Box 19063, Tygerberg 7505, South Africa; aneesa{at}sun.ac.za

Abstract

Introduction Home tracheostomy care for children in South Africa dates back to 1989.

Objective This study aimed to describe the tracheostomy home programme at Tygerberg Children's Hospital (TCH), situated in a resource-limited setting in Cape Town, South Africa.

Design Retrospective descriptive study.

Setting Tracheostomy home programme at TCH. The primary care giver is trained by nurses.

Results Fifty-six children (29 girls) were discharged to the home programme (47 to home and 9 to institutions). The median age at tracheostomy was 3 months, mainly for airway obstruction. The mean duration of home care was 26.6 months. Twenty-seven children (43%) were successfully decannulated. Seven children lived in informal housing. The 56 children generated 745 social work contacts. The overall survival was 82%.

Conclusion Children with tracheostomies can be safely cared for at home, even in a resource-constrained environment, provided training, appropriate technology and social support services are available.

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Footnotes

  • Funding AV is funded by the Nycomed South African Thoracic Society Fellowship.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Ethics approval Ethics approval was provided by the Committee for Human Research of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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