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POS in Africa

At this year’s triennial African Palliative Care Association Conference, in partnership with the Hospice Palliative Care Association of South Africa, Kath Defilippi (HPCA) and Prof. Julia Downing (Professor at Makerere University Uganda) led a workshop on the use of the APCA African POS. It was well attended, with 72 people attending from Zimbabwe, Uganda, Kenya, South Africa, Rwanda, Botswana, Swaziland, Nigeria, Tanzania, Malawi, Namibia, Ghana, Cameroon, Gambia and the Ivory Coast.

The workshop was an opportunity for people to share how they are currently using the POS, to share experiences, and to identify ways to roll it out further and troubleshoot implementation. POS is currently being used as follows:

  • Administered to newly admitted patients to get a baseline of their palliative care needs and then auditing how these needs are met over a period of six consecutive visits
  • In the assessment of pain and effectiveness of prescribed medicationUsed in patients when pain and symptom control is difficult
  • To assess individual patient progressTo measure the effectiveness of our holistic care
  • As an indicator of specific family support needs and coping skills
  • To identify gaps in information among the interdisciplinary team
  • To encourage an holistic approach in the development of the care plan
  • To evaluate the performance of the care team
  • To identify areas for quality improvement and risk management
  • To pin point areas for ongoing training
  • To evaluate the overall effectiveness of the service
  • To identify items/protocols for a structured clinical audit
  • To measure time taken to address pain and symptoms in home care patients
  • To prioritise the planning of interventions
  • To have evidence of the effectiveness of our care
  • As an advocacy tool to influence policy and procure funding
  • To provide feedback and motivate staff
  • For research 
African Palliative Care Association website

Further information about POS: POS website