Kerala Community Development Model of Palliative Care

Professor Geralyn Hynes, Ussher Associate Professor Palliative Care, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Trinity College Dublin, was awarded the special purpose bursary which enabled her to visit the Institute of Palliative Medicine, Kerala, India. The Institute is the World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for Community Participation in Palliative Care and Long Term Care and aims to develop an understanding of community participation in palliative care including developing support mechanisms through education and training courses.

The aim of the visit was to explore how the Institute of Palliative Medicine’s Kerala Model might inform strategies to embed palliative care across different patient groups and care settings in the Irish context. During her visit in January 2014, she attended homecare and outpatients visits, meetings between volunteers and palliative care nurses and community volunteer functions.

She also met with individual nurses, doctors, project leaders and support staff and community volunteers who are involved in delivering the Kerala Model. Professor Hynes has produced a report which details the key lessons and outcomes from her visit. It also details the outcomes that she expects to deliver as a result of her visit including investigating opportunities to incorporate the theory, which informs the Kerala Model into palliative care teaching within TCD. She also plans to explore further opportunities for research on utilising a social model involving community volunteers within an Irish context.

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