Dr. Mhoira Leng (Uganda)
2016 Developing Countries Working Group Grant Winner
"Improving nurses' and pharmacists' pain recognition, assessment and management skills in Mulago and Kiruddu hospitals in Uganda."
This project aims at improving health professionals' recognition, assessment and management of pain in Mulago and Kiruddu hospitals, to improve on patients' pain experience. This is in response to findings of a needs assessment in Mulago hospital in 2009 that revealed that 47% (N=78) patients had moderate to severe pain, however, only 3 patients had received morphine (Lewington 2012). Following this, pain management has been integrated in the training of undergraduate and postgraduate medical students. However, pain management is not well established in the nursing and pharmacists' curriculum. Training needs to be extended to nurses and pharmacists if integration of pain management into health professionals' daily work is to be achieved.
The project will involve appointing a nurse tutor who will work on this project for one year. Link nurses and pharmacists will be identified from Mulago and Kiruddu hospitals and trained in 3 five day workshops. After completion of the workshops, trainees will have 2 days of placement within the palliative care unit to clinically model pain management. Nurse trainees will be mentored by the nurse tutor over the course of the year. The nurse tutor will also work with the trained pharmacists to ensure availability of pain medicines.