Husband and wife health workers head from Norfolk to Ethiopia to share their care expertise

Jamie and Sue Mumford on an earlier trip to Ethiopia

Jamie and Sue Mumford on an earlier trip to Ethiopia - Credit: Archant

Patients with life-threatening illnesses in Africa are set to benefit from the expertise of two north Norfolk health professionals.

Specialist nurse Sue Mumford and her Aylsham GP husband Jamie are heading to Ethiopia to pass on their knowledge of palliative care.

Their 10-week stay is part of a two-year-old 'twinning' link between the Priscilla Bacon Centre at Norwich and Hospice Ethiopia, which provides care to patients who are coming to the end of their lives.

It aims to pass on knowledge to local medical staff to improve the quality of life of patients, as well as raise awareness of palliative care among professionals and the public.

Mrs Mumford, a community specialist palliative care nurse, and her husband Jamie will run a series of education sessions and work alongside colleagues from the Hospice Ethiopia charity to care for patients with HIV, AIDS, and cancer in their own homes.

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It will their second trip to the country, having spent five days in Addis Ababa in late 2012.

She said: 'We are excited about the trip, but also find it quite daunting at the same time. We felt we were able to benefit patients and colleagues with our skills during our last trip and hope to do the same this time around. High-quality palliative care is limited in Ethiopia, so any difference you can make is really positive for patients and staff.'

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The kind of problems patients had in Ethiopia, whether psychological or physical, were 'not hugely different' to those back in Norfolk.

They will also be giving lectures in medical schools and teaching paediatric nurses caring for children receiving cancer treatment during their three-month unpaid sabbatical.

Staff at the Priscilla Bacon hold charity events for Hospice Ethiopia, and recently raised £2,500 through a sponsored walk around eight north Norfolk villages - Erpingham, Thurgarton, Hanworth, Ingworth, Oulton, Plumstead, Itteringham and Aldborough - whose name spell out Ethiopia.

To contribute towards the Hospice Ethiopia fundraising activity, people can send cheques to Hospice Africa, c/o Katie Soden, Priscilla Bacon Centre, Colman Hospital, Unthank Road, Norwich, Norfolk, NR2 2PJ

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