An Integrated Approach to the Mitigation of Chronic Illnesses
There are serious concerns relating to the growing number of people living with chronic illnesses that were being cared for at home and within the community but are not receiving appropriate attention and care from the health service providers and the health system at large. This happens despite the existence of Ministry of Health sanctioned Community and Home Based Care programmes. Patient centred and effective health intervention programmes are mandatory if the health outcomes of service users are to be met or improved. This study aimed toexplore the effectiveness of the Community and Home Based Care (C&HBC) in providing services that effectively met users’ goals in mitigating chronic illnesses. An explorative and descriptive mixed methods study was used in which in-depth structured and unstructured interviews and focus group discussion were conducted with 206 eligible participants. Results showed that the C&HBC programme generally improved the health status of respondents resulting in an enhanced quality of life. There was a satisfactory measure of socio-economic needs such as finance, food security, and pain relief being poorly met. The Community and Home Based care programme could not meet all the needs due to limited resources and a lack of integration of services. A fully integrated health and social care service is needed.
Keywords: Chronic Illnesses, Clients’ Needs, Community and Home Based Care, Integration of Health Care, Service Users’ Needs