In this study session you will learn what palliative care means; how to obtain information, grade pain and provide pain relief; how to advise patients on home-based methods for controlling pain; and on home-based and end-of-life care for people living with HIV (PLHIV). You will also learn how to provide psychosocial and nutritional support. In the future you may be involved in providing community-based palliative care services for PLHIV.
Palliative care is care given to chronically ill people to improve their quality of life and that of their families. It involves prevention and relief of suffering, pain and other physical problems, and attention to psychosocial and spiritual issues. Palliative care is also provided for terminally ill patients with conditions such as cancer, heart disease and stroke. The four components of palliative care in Ethiopia which you will learn about in this session are symptom management, including pain management; psychosocial and spiritual support; home-based care, and end-of-life care.