Beatrice Matandiko Zulu
General Nursing Council of Zambia, Zambia
The major causes of inequality in the health care systems are gender differences and inequalities because women and men play different roles in society. For example, in addition to the different gender specific diseases, women often have less direct access to resources and are often less able than men to take measures to protect themselves against certain diseases (ADBG 2009). The difference in roles played by men and women also impact who takes care of the sick and the elderly at home or in health facilities. Available evidence shows that women wait longer than men to seek medical care partly due to their unwillingness to disrupt household functioning until they become incapacitated. Therefore, gender disparities in the use of health services, health status and access and in health outcomes persist, signifying a need to address gender inequality in palliative health care services. The purpose of the desktop review is to provide the health sector evidence to facilitate effective analysis and identification of the gender issues in the provision of palliative care services and for effective gender analysis and mainstreaming in palliative care service provision. The results should be helpful to demonstrate good practices in mainstreaming gender in palliative care. One of the principles of palliative care is that it is applicable early in the course of illness, in conjunction with other therapies intended to prolong life (ARVs, chemo-radiation) and investigations needed to better understand and manage distressing clinical complications (WHO, 2002). Presently, in Zambia, palliative care services are offered to cancer patients.
Beatrice Matandiko Zulu, GNC Education and Training Manager, coordinates nursing and midwifery education and training programmes and ensure integration of core competencies into nursing curricula. Prior to joining GNC, she was Principal Tutor for Lusaka School of Midwifery and later briefly as Nursing Education Manager for Lusaka schools of nursing and midwifery. She received both her Master in Gender and BSc degree from the University of Zambia. She was a co-investigator in a research paper that was published in the International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship manuscript 2379 in 2012.