Nyeri Deputy Governor Dr. Caroline Karugu has been unveiled as the Palliative Care Ambassador in Kenya.

The announcement was made on Thursday by the Kenya Hospices and Palliative Care Association (KEHPCA) at a Nairobi Hotel.

Karugu has been very passionate when it comes to working with the community with people living with non-communicable diseases and is especially drawn to those who are diagnosed with cancer and the family members who are affected by it.

“I have lived in a home with family members with cancer that is why I am so passionate. There is a lot of fear when it comes to cancer screening. We need to advocate for Persons Living with Palliative Care Needs in our society,” she said.

“I consider this opportunity as one of the greatest honours I have ever been accorded. We still need to do more,” Karugu added.

Palliative care is the service provided to improve the quality of life of patients facing problems associated with life-threatening illnesses or conditions associated with serious health suffering and their families.

It is estimated that about one million Kenyans require palliative care, only less than 15 per cent of adults and, less than one per cent of pediatric patients have access to such care.

These include patients affected by both communicable and non-communicable diseases (NCDs), a burden that continues to weigh heavily on Kenya’s health system.

“When we heard her speak and express her heartfelt desire to work with people living with NCDs, we knew we had a champion for Persons Living with Palliative Care Needs. I can vouch for her excellence and determination to represent PLWPCNs in Kenya,” KEHPCA Executive Director Dr. Zipporah Ali said.

“We will continue to work closely as we ensure that quality palliative care is a human right for all who need it.”

KEHPCA is committed to advocating for quality palliative care for all in Kenya by promoting and supporting acceptable, accessible, and affordable quality palliative care for individuals and families by creating networks of informed and empowered institutions in Kenya.

According to the World Health Organisation, patients with cancer, CVDs, cirrhosis of the liver, chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases, HIV, kidney failure, multiple sclerosis drug-resistant TB and rheumatoid arthritis require palliative care.

Other conditions include congenital anomalies, blood, and immune disorders, meningitis, neurological disorders, and neonatal conditions.

This article was written and originally published by a journalist in one of the daily newspapers in Kenya. Please find the link to the story here: https://www.the-star.co.ke/news/2020-11-13-nyeri-dg-unveiled-as-kenya-palliative-care-ambassador/