n African Journal for Physical Health Education, Recreation and Dance - Needs of primary caregivers relating to care given to HIV/AIDS patients and support from palliative care nurses in Malawi : perspectives of HIV and AIDS across populations

Supplement 2
  • ISSN : 1117-4315


The current care of people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) rests with primary caregivers since they are now nursed at home. This is as a result of the management of HIV/AIDS with antiretroviral therapy (ART) which prolongs the lives of PLWHA. The palliative care approach has been instrumental in improving the quality of life for PLWHA and is being provided at the clinics by nurses. However, continuity of care is provided at home by primary caregivers who take up this role without preparation, training and support. The study explored the primary caregiver's needs concerning care given to HIV/AIDS patients and the support they receive from palliative care nurses in Malawi. The study used qualitative explorative research design to conduct in-depth interviews with 18 primary caregivers from three palliative care clinics in Lilongwe and Salima districts of Malawi. Data were analyzed using NVivo software package version 10 and three themes emerged from the data. Findings revealed that primary caregivers needed training in their role and education on the patients' condition from nurses to provide proper care. They also needed clinical and financial resources which negatively impacted the care they provided to the patients. They also needed support of different forms in their role to give proper care to patient. More could be done in meeting the needs of primary caregivers to achieve better quality of care to PLWHA.

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