St John Ambulance Malawi says provision of home-based care (HBC) services to persons living with HIV and Aids (PLWHA) remains crucial in the fight against the pandemic and other chronic diseases in Malawi.
National coordinator Eleanor Kumdana said this in Blantyre over the weekend when she closed a 10-day training workshop for 32 HBC volunteers drawn from the city’s townships.
She said the care that untrained family and associates provide to chronically ill patients and people living with HIV or suffering from Aids also helps in reducing the workload on professional health workers.
Kumdana said this, in turn, helps in ensuring that those admitted to hospitals receive the maximum care and support they deserve.
“And this is one of the reasons we decided to train HBC volunteers. We want to ensure that patients with chronic diseases and PLWHA do not suffer unnecessarily. We believe you’ll complement doctors’ efforts in relieving the pain that patients go through while in their homes,” she said.
Kumdana emphasised the need for the graduating volunteers to share what they had learned with others back in their communities so that the expertise extends to many people.
Group village head (GVH) Magasa of Chirimba commended St John Ambulance for organising the training, saying it will go a long way in sealing the knowledge gap in HBC services.
Magasa also said the training had rekindled memories of the 1990s when PLWHA used to enjoy maximum care and support from families, friends and communities at large, which was usually not the case these days