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Faith in Action : Our Lady's Hospice in Lusaka Zambia

Our Lady’s Hospice is a Faith-Based Organisation situated in Kalingalinga, Lusaka, Zambia.

The Hospice is under the patronage of His Grace the Archbishop of Lusaka.

Four Catholic Religious Congregations are involved in the administration of Our Lady’s Hospice:

Our Lady’s Hospice depends on charity and generosity to be able to function. There are about 70 members of staff and their salaries have to be found from charity.

Sr. Kay at Our Lady's HospiceThe mission of Our Lady's Hospice has several facets. It promotes and provides quality Palliative Care through a committed team in a conducive environment for patients who have HIV and AIDS, and Cancer. It provides training to the carers of the sick and to the wider Zambian health care community. It provides training to prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS. It strives to be self supporting, for example growing its own food.

At Our Lady’s Hospice patients of all faiths are welcomed, without discrimination. Any patient who is in need is never turned away, day or night. Through faith, patients suffering from a life-threatening illness are helped to come to terms with their illness and to renew hope for living with a certain quality of life until death. The services at the Hospice are available at minimum cost to all who need palliative care. However, those who cannot afford to pay are given priority.

Sr. Rogita visiting client at homeCurrently Our Lady’s Hospice is serving an area with a population of approximately 250,000. It is estimated that in such a group of people at least 50,000 may be infected with HIV. Each month, the Hospice caters for an average of 60 in-patients, 1,600 out-patients and is registering about 20 deaths. In recent years the role of the Hospice has changed from only end-of-life care, to offering a more comprehensive holistic approach to palliative care that includes Antiretroviral Treatment and Paediatric care. However, the Hospice still caters for patients at the end-of-life stage of their illness with the facility to admit up to 33 in-patients in 5 different wards/houses. High rates of morbidity and mortality in patients with HIV and AIDS are due largely to opportunistic infections related to immune-suppression. These conditions, with proper diagnosis and management can be treated, life expectancy can be increased and the quality of life enhanced.

Our Lady’s Hospice strives to be self supporting. Food is grown to feed staff and patients. There is a department to train primary care givers, especially family members of the sick. Students from local schools are trained in preventing the spread of HIV and AIDS and in caring for sick members of their families. There are partnerships with many local major health institutions and the Hospice takes placements from students at regional and national universities and colleges, including the University of Zambia.

To continue the mission of love, care and training Our Lady’s Hospice faces many strategic and operational challenges. We can help with this wonderful work. Please remember the staff, patients and supporters of Our Lady’s Hospice in your prayers and support them generously with donations and support our fund raising events.