Hospice: HospiceWits
Name of patient: Referred to as, “Robert”
Written by: HospiceWits
Diagnosis: HIV/AIDS
Message: Palliative care can be offered along with curative treatments and should commence at the point of diagnosis of a life-threatening illness.

A 60-year-old male patient Robert (not his real name), a former athlete, was referred to HospiceWits in March 2016. He was diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. On admission to the hospice’s in-patient-unit he was presenting with confusion, diarrhea, general body weakness and wasting of the body due to severe chronic illness.

Due to his mental instability he destroyed everything he could get his hands on inside the in-patient unit, including the wall television and window blinds. The nursing team made certain that he received his anti-retroviral medication according to the hospital’s instructions.

On discharge he was feeling much better. He was also referred to the I-ACT support group facilitated by hospice. The support group provided him with encouragement to continue taking his medication and not to miss his clinic appointments. Other psychosocial issues of people living with HIV/AIDS were addressed. The HospiceWits home care team continued to follow and care for him at home. His adherence to medication was also monitored.

Whilst at home the patient developed TB MDR and meningitis. He was put on the MDR TB regime course. The HospiceWits nurse and community health worker continued to support the patient.

He was also assisted with a grant application by the HospiceWits social worker and offered psychosocial support when needed. Robert went back to jogging, and is also involved in the recycling business. He got stronger.

Robert is currently doing well. He is seen by the Community Careworker for continuous health education and support and his appointments at Diepkloof clinic where he takes his ARVs are up to date. He is continuing with his recycling business and with the money from his recycling business, he has managed to build a wall around his house. Robert is pleased with the hospice care he receives.