Estcourt Hospice – Unknown

Hospice: Estcourt Hospice
Name of patient: Unknown
Written by: Unknown
Diagnosis: HIV positive (on ART) with recto vaginal fistula and paraplegic
Message: This patient story clearly illustrates the power of a multidisciplinary team approach

A 35-year-old lady with two children – the youngest of whom was 18 months, was referred to Estcourt Hospice by the local primary health care clinic for palliative care.

Upon admission, her brief history indicated that she was HIV positive (on ART) and was suffering from recto vaginal fistula and paraplegic.

At the first encounter, the patient was bedridden and could not move either her upper or lower limbs. She was also experiencing severe pain.

Palliative Care Services Offered

The following interventions have greatly assisted her progress:

  • A proper assessment of her pain was conducted.
  • Counselling was provided so that she can understand her condition.
  • A reassessment of her palliative care needs.
  • Encouragement to help her to live more positively, despite her condition.
  • A co-operative action, together with her aunt, to receive family.
  • Weekly visits were administered for palliative care. She was also connected with an internal social worker.

There was also a proper assessment and identification of any physical problems. This saw the patient referred to a hospital doctor and physiotherapist, with a sense of optimism implemented through the role of the physiotherapist in how they improved the patient’s condition.

Current Progress

The patient’s upper limbs can now move, and she is making progress with more movement in her lower limbs as well. Exercises by the palliative care team and physiotherapist are still ongoing. With pain control, the patient is now experiencing less pain and she is also able to sit on her own and has no pressure sores.

The patient is receiving her grant which assists her financially. She is bright, happy and with a far happier and positive mindset. The patient adheres to her treatment and her palliative care is going consistently well. She is also so very appreciative of what the hospice has done to help and support her, including lifting her in the hospice vehicle when she needs to go to the hospital for her treatment or physiotherapy sessions.