Background and Context:
Palliative care is “an approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families facing the problem associated with life-threatening illness, through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification and impeccable assessment and treatment of pain and other problems, physical, psychosocial and spiritual” (WHO, 2014). With the increased prevalence of cancer and life threatening diseases and the discovery of better treatment modalities that increases longevity, improving the quality of life has become vital. Community health nurses, in Oman and globally, provides care to individuals, families and communities across the life span and the wellness-illness continuum in all community settings. They do so to prevent diseases, improve and restore health. Community health nurses play a vital role in providing palliative care in home settings.
As palliative care is in its infancy in Oman, the aim was to raise the awareness of healthcare professionals about palliative care and raise the public awareness about prevention and management of different life-threatening diseases and the role that a community health nurse play in providing palliative care to patients in community.
A scientific day followed by a community outreach program was planned.
The program was organized with the involvement of young nursing students. It consisted of a scientific day involving a multidisciplinary team including doctors and nurses as well as religious people as speakers. This scientific day was followed by a two-day community outreach program targeting the public.
Outcomes/What was learned:
The program was expected to raise awareness among professionals about palliative care, role of a multidisciplinary team in providing this service and the role of community health nurses. In addition, it was expected that it will raise public awareness about prevention, management of these life-threatening disease and introduce palliative care service to them.