DFL has identified the need to develop a Home Based Care program for terminally ill patients. The reason being that hospitals and clinics in some areas of the country are not able to cope with the increasing inpatient loads.
Some big referral hospitals are reluctant to accept transfers of AIDS patients. AIDS patients are reported to occupy up to 90% of beds in some hospitals. DFL has started the training of AIDS Home Based Care, caretakers. More than 500 candidates have completed the 5-day basic course, which has been presented in 4 provinces. DFL has also conducted Home Based Care courses in some provincial hospitals. About a thousand patients have already been treated through the program and the number is increasing all the time. We are in the process of training enough trainers to develop a network of available caretakers in SA and we plan to include Mozambique, Lesotho and Swaziland. The care kit required for one Home Caretakers costs about R200. Funds are needed to finance this program. DFL has been requested to provide training to provincial and national health departments in South Africa.
New Home Based Carers trained in Tabase Nek, Umtata
Home Based Care training took place at the River Jordan Pre-School between 16 and 20 May and went very well. The training was conducted by Mrs. Dahl from Harding and twenty four new Home Based Carers were trained. The team will soon start working in Tabase Nek and surrounding areas. This will be a great help to many people, especially those who have been hard hit by the AIDS epidemic. The team will also train Primary Care Givers to care for immediate family and close community members who are unwell.
From Eunice Mteshane, Home Based Carer at Harding, KwaZulu Natal:
I’m thankful to have met with Doctors for Life. There are many people who have been helped through the Home Based Care project, young and old, male and female. Although some have passed away, many others are still with us, by God’s grace. I would like to tell you about a child I found when he was just a year old. He was very tiny and couldn’t sit or walk and would always cry. He basically couldn’t do anything. But with the help of Doctors for Life he can walk today and he started Grade one in 2010. There was also another little girl who would always cry. Her teeth were bad and she had swollen glands, but today she’s doing grade three. Then there was a woman who had become like a very old person due to illness, but today she cannot stop talking about being helped by Doctors for Life. Therefore I say forward Doctors for Life, forward!