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Developing a palliative care service for children in the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, Blantyre, Malawi
  1. Elizabeth M Molyneux,
  2. Vicky Lavy,
  3. Mary Bunn,
  4. Zoe Palmer,
  5. Fred Chiputula
  1. The Paediatric Department, Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, Blantyre, Malawi
  1. Correspondence to Professor E M Molyneux, The Paediatric Department, Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, Box 95, Blantyre, Malawi; emmolyneux{at}gmail.com

Abstract

There are too few palliative care services for children in resource poor countries. Health carers are overwhelmed with cases of acute illness that need their urgent attention, and chronically ill children with life-limiting diseases have been sidelined. The HIV epidemic in southern Africa revealed the huge needs in our own hospital, and in 2002, we started a hospital-based paediatric palliative care service. It was the first in Africa. We describe here how it developed and expanded in the ensuing years and how it has affected our staff, the children and their families in our care.

  • Palliative Care
  • Malawi
  • developing

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