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Norfolk nurse sees 'slow progress' in Ethiopian palliative care

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A twinning arrangement between palliative care specialists in Norfolk and hospices in Ethiopia is starting to make “progress” in the Africa country, according to a nurse involved with the scheme.

Sue Mumford, a community specialist palliative care nurse who gives up her free time to help develop palliative care in skills in Ethiopia, has spoken of the progress she has seen after returning from her third trip to the country.

Ms Mumford is based at Priscilla Bacon Centre in Norwich, which is run by Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS Trust.

“We are starting to see changes in, and progress is inching forwards”

Sue Mumford

She last travelled to Africa with her GP husband Jamie during January. She spent a week in Uganda, before returning to Addis Ababa to support staff at Hospice Ethiopia and provide teaching about the principles of pain management at a government hospital.

The visit was arranged as part of a twinning arrangement between the Priscilla Bacon Centre and Hospice Ethiopia, which was created in 2011 to enable staff to share best practice.

“We are starting to see changes in, and progress is inching forwards,” said Ms Mumford. “Previously, morphine was only available from one oncology department in the whole country, which was a big problem.

“While we were there, we were involved in training about 30 doctors and nurses in pain management, which has opened the door for them and will now give them access to 4,000 bottles of morphine to help their patients,” she said.

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