Palliative Care service starts in Myanmar

By Dr Wah Wah Myint Zu, Palliative Care Clinic, Yangon General Hospital

13 August 2015 was the opening ceremony of the first Palliative Care Clinic in Myanmar, based at the main general hospital, Yangon General Hospital (YGH). I have been so busy and tired with the preparations. But seeing that the opening ceremony was successful, it feels like all my tiredness was gone and I feel refreshed again! I am so excited and looking forward to giving value added Palliative care service to our patients!!

Our multidisciplinary palliative care team comprises of all the participants from YGH who attended the Lien Collaborative for Palliative Care (LCPC)  Training-of-Trainer in Palliative Care program conducted by the Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Network (APHN). The doctors in the team are Dr Khin Thin Mu from the medical oncology specialty, Dr Yin Thu Win, Dr Lin Lin Kyi and myself from the radiotherapy department (RT) , Dr Soe Thant from the orthosurgical unit, Dr Soe Soe Khaing from PM&R department. May Mar Min Aung and Chaw Kalayar are the palliative care trained nurses. We also have two members, Thin Thin Soe and Thin Thin Wai from medical social work. The team will be taking care of patients using the interdisciplinary holistic care approach like symptom management, nursing care, psycho-social care and spiritual care.

I am very thankful to Prof Myint Thaung (Head of Orthopaedic Department and President of Myanmar Chapter in ASEAPS) who gave the speech at our opening ceremony. He presented on how the Palliative care training is established, about the collaboration between Lien Foundation and APHN group. He highlighted our intention of Palliative care training which is to develop champions in Palliative care service and to train other health personnel about Palliative care.

I will also like to thank Prof Khin Myo Hla (President of the Myanmar Chapter of the International Association for the Study of Pain and Head of the Rehabiliation Department) for supporting us; A/Prof Daw Khin Cho Win (Head of the Radiotherapy Department), Prof U Myo Myint Maw (Head of the Medical Oncology Department) and Prof Win Min Thit (Head of Neuro-Medical Department), consultants from our department; Dr Moe Hlaing, Dr Mie Mie Thwe, consultants from Medical Oncology Department; Dr Phyu Phyu Theint , Dr Shwe Sin Win,Dr Zun Thynn , specialist assistant surgeons and post graduate students from RT, Matron, Patron , Sisters and Staff nurses form both OPD and ward and from the Pain treatment centre, physicists from our RT department and medical social officers. They have all taken time to attend the opening ceremony in spite of their busy workload.  Last but not least, I will like to thank Ms Mona and Dr Reddy's company for helping us and those companies who sent us flowers in support of us.

As this phase of our training program is slowly drawing closer to an end, I will really miss the other palliative care participants. We have a bulletin board showing photos of our Palliative Care Training activities by the APHN, right from the first module which started in Dec 2012 to the fifth module which ended in July 2015. They showed our hardwork, role playing and team spirit building activities, group presentations and at one occasion, a remarkable relaxing dinner. Our 6th and last module will be in Jan 2016.

To all the other participants of the LCPC program, we welcome you anytime to visit our clinic and any help you offer to us will be very much appreciated.

If you are interested to find out more about the Lien Collaborative for Palliative Care or contribute articles on palliative care services in your country, please contact Joyce at aphn@aphn.org or +65 6235 5166.

 

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