Background A Clinical Oncology department at a University hospital is the first new oncology department in Upper Egypt since 1970. The hospital provides oncology services for up to 3000 new and existing patients per year. Through connections with the Global Cancer Care Egypt-UK charity, a six-bedded palliative care unit has been established within the hospital.
Aim To establish and deliver a palliative care/end of life training programme for the medical/nursing staff of the new palliative care unit led by the St Luke’s Hospice team. The training will target 15 clinical staff including junior and intermediate grade oncology doctors and also include senior nurses who can pass on the training to junior nurses.
Method ECHO methodology has shown how palliative care knowledge can improve patient care through virtual delivery to those in hard to reach locations (White, McIlfatrick, Dunwoody, et al. BMJ Support Palliat Care. 2019;9:202–208; Manson, Gardiner, Taylor, et al. BMJ Support Palliat Care. Published online: 24 February 2021). A learning needs questionnaire was developed and completed by the Egyptian team to establish the learning priorities for the unit staff.
Utilising ECHO, a rolling programme of six ECHO sessions has been designed to be delivered via zoom to the team in Egypt. The six sessions are: (1) Recognising dying. (2) Communication on dying/challenging conversations/breaking bad news. (3) Supporting physical care at end of life. (4) Nausea/vomiting/bowel obstruction (including pharmacological considerations). (5) Palliative care emergencies. (6) Pain management (including pharmacological considerations).
Pre and post programme self-efficacy confidence and competence evaluation questionnaires will be completed to measure learning and establish future needs.
Results No results available as yet as anticipated start of delivery is early June 2023.
Conclusion We hope to show increased knowledge of palliative and end of life care in the oncology team following attendance at the six ECHO sessions. Should the evaluation show a positive outcome the expectation is that the programme may be repeated annually.
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