International work

We believe that everyone living with a life-limiting or terminal illness has the right to quality, affordable care, and we support a number of international projects that help develop hospice and palliative care worldwide, particularly in developing countries.

Children's palliative care development in Malawi

Current projects

We support international partners to manage projects funded by UK and European donor organisations, and also engage with other organisations internationally, through our membership of the Worldwide Hospice and Palliative Care Alliance, to support and promote hospice and palliative care across the world.

Our current projects include:

  • Access to Opioid Medication in Europe (ATOME)
  • Children's palliative care development in India and Malawi
  • Community HIV Care in Zimbabwe

Access to Opioid Medication in Europe (ATOME)

We are part of a consortium of academic institutions and public health organisations in this project. We are working to help governments identify and remove barriers preventing people from accessing medicines that could improve end-of-life care and alleviate debilitating pain. The ultimate goal is to improve access for all patients requiring treatment with opioid medicines.

The project is targeting 12 European countries: Slovenia, Turkey, Cyprus, Greece, Latvia, Hungary, Estonia, Serbia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Poland and Bulgaria. Policy and legislative reviews were conducted to identify key barriers to access to opioids in each country.  One-day conferences were also held in 11 of the 12 project countries to share findings of the reviews and provide opportunities for discussion and debate about accessibility and availability of opioids.

Twelve country reports will be produced by the end of the project with targeted recommendations to each government for legislative changes.  

Project partners include the University of Lancaster, University Hospital Bonn, International Harm Reduction Association and the European Association of Palliative Care. The project is funded through the European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme [FP7/2007-2013].

Find out more about this project on the ATOME website.

Children's palliative care development in India and Malawi

We are working with the International Children's Palliative Care Network (ICPCN) to address the need for appropriate children's palliative care, with pain relieving medicines, for children in Malawi and Maharashtra state in India.

Training and mentorship on children’s palliative care was provided to healthcare workers in six hospital sites – three in Malawi and three in India. These healthcare workers are now running children’s palliative care clinics and providing care and support to children with life-limiting conditions and their families. 

Health professionals from other areas also receive training and awareness on children’s palliative care through this project. Plus, the project’s staff and partners are engaging in advocacy and policy influencing activities to increase the commitment of regional and national governments to provide appropriate children’s palliative care services.

The project started in October 2010 and is funded by the UK Department for International Development, Civil Society Challenge Fund. The lead in-country partners are:

  • Palliative Care Association of Malawi with Umodzi Palliative Care Team at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Malawi
  • Indian Association of Palliative Care with Tata Memorial Hospital in India.

Visit the ICPCN website for more information about international developments in children’s palliative care.

Community HIV Care in Zimbabwe

We are working with Island Hospice on a three-year project aiming to improve the quality of life for people living with and affected by HIV in Goromonzi District, Zimbabwe. The project is funded by the Big Lottery’s International Communities Fund and began in November 2013.

Training and mentorship on the provision of care and support to people living with HIV has been provided to healthcare professionals and community volunteers. These trained health professionals and volunteers are now providing care and support to people in their local communities living with HIV.

There are a number of activities within the project particularly targeting children. For example, bereavement workshops and on-going support are being provided for orphans and vulnerable children. These children have lost one or both parents and are in vulnerable circumstances – they may be homeless, living with a disability or living with HIV themselves.

Training and on-going support is also being provided for young people who are caring for one or more parent.

Visit the Island Hospice website for more information on their work.

Past projects

You can also access information on some of our recently ended projects including:

  • a project on access to opioids in six African countries which helped national palliative care associations address and overcome key barriers to drug availability
  • work to develop health systems in Sierra Leone which resulted in almost 9,000 people living with HIV and AIDS and TB receiving care and support.

Further information

Contact us if you would like to find out more about any of these projects, and visit the Worldwide Hospice and Palliative Care Alliance website for a range of resources to help with developing hospice and palliative care across the world.

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