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Palliative care in South Africa during the Covid19 pandemic is crucial

A palliative care approach is relevant to all patients with a Covid19 infection, no mater their final outcome. Along with managing the intricacies of ventilators and other treatments clinicians will be required to:

  • manage distressing symptoms,
  • have complex and difficult conversations,
  • support decision making based a patient’s medical condition, their goals and values and the realities of the medical system,
  • manage psychosocial and existential distress
  • AND maintain personal resilience and well-being

The pandemic has highlighted the glaring gap in training and palliative care services in South Africa.


PALPRAC wants to support colleagues in delivering good palliative care to their patient, whether at home, long term care facilities or in hospital.


Palliative care virtual support to healthcare professionals


With thanks to Dr Pelisa Ford for the isiXhosa translation, and Mrs Alta Nel for translating the documents into Afrikaans.

Caring for a dying loved one at home can be daunting. This hand out will assist families and carers in understanding what the elements of care are. that needs to be paid attention to in this time.

Oral morphine is an important component in the management of dyspnoea and pain due to Covid-19. Use this flyer to give clear instructions to families on the use of oral morphine at home.

Breathlessness is a common symptom of Covid. This handout gives useful tips to patients and families in managing this.

During the COVID crises families will unlikely be able to visit their loved ones. Use this handout for families to tell health care care workers in hospitals or care facilities a little more about their loved one and to ensure that the right family contact details are available.

Carers need to be able to stay safe while caring for COVID positive patients, for the sake of themselves, their patients and their own community. The PALPRAC Carer Guidelines June 2020 will assist them in doing so.