The Makerere Palliative Care Unit (MPCU) is an academic unit within the Department of Medicine, School of Medicine, Makerere University College of Health Sciences that was started in 2008. The aim of the unit is to operate a centre of excellence which improves access to quality evidence-based care for patients and families in need. This is done by delivering an integrated clinical service within the context of a national referral hospital site in Uganda, carrying out research, training and capacity building in collaboration with partners and developing leaders in Palliative care. 


Palliative Medicine has been promoted by the National Health Sector Strategic Plan (NSSP) from Ministry of Health as an essential clinical service for all Ugandans since 2000 and again in the NSSP 2006-11. Thus the training of all health professionals, to spread this care to all, is a priority.

The MPCU seeks to recruit dynamic, skilled, and caring Ugandan team member, committed to support a clinical service underpinned by research in palliative care. 

Job purpose:
This is a research post, for 1 year in the Palliative care Unit in the Department of Medicine ,with a view to develop an evidence based palliative care practice for hospital palliative care in Uganda and other African countries, due to begin August 2011.
The incumbent will be involved in doing research and in the provision of clinical support to the team in MPCU in the provision of quality and timely medical services. The incumbent will strengthen palliative care skills and the management of clinical services in line with the College of Health Sciences   and Mulago hospital policies and procedures and acceptable medical standards and practices.

Job Location: The post will be based at Mulago hospital with Department of Medicine Makerere University.

Key Responsibilities:
The incumbent will be directly responsible to the head of the Palliative care Unit, and will perform the following;
1. Clinical:

  • To support the specialist Registrar in their responsibilities
  • Direct provision of palliative care to patients and families as part of interdisciplinary team.
  • Examine, assess and provide appropriate treatment and advice for patients referred to the service.
  • Make referrals to other specialties for conditions which may be more appropriately managed elsewhere as well as referral for home based care for those who are discharged from hospital.
  • Identify psychological, social, and spiritual issues confronting ill patients and their families, and offer sensitive support and referral to other services where appropriate.
  • To work closely with Palliative Care Nurses in team to provide an excellent service.
  • Maintain excellent communication within the team and with other specialities or individuals involved in care.
  • Maintain high standard of documentation and record-keeping.
  • Assist in preparing monthly and annual  reports for the unit.
  • Actively promote access to comprehensive quality palliative care to those in need.  

2. Teaching:

  • To take part in training programmes and clinical teaching at Makerere for Medical students and graduate students.
  • To assist in preparing training materials
  • To mentor students on electives from Ugandan Universities and from African countries, UK and USA etc.
  • To be involved with the Distance Learning Degree in Palliative care for all Africa.

3. Research and Publications:

  • To undertake a chosen and clinical research project after the first 2 months
  • To oversee and support research projects by the  MPCU team and elective students that are part of the MPCU research agenda.
  • To present at a conference and/or publish at least one paper during the first 6 months  in a peer reviewed Journal

Person specification:
Post graduate degree in medicine (MMed or MRCP), preferably in internal medicine experienced in African palliative care, or in a similar  resource poor setting. The person must be a team player, able to share experience and advice.  
This post requires people management skills, effective interpersonal skills, oral and written communication skills, good facilitation and presentation skills, computer literacy in MS Office applications; word, excel and PowerPoint.


Applications in hard copies should be delivered by hand to:

The administrative assistant palliative care unit, school of Medicine, Makerere University College of Health Sciences in the Clinical Research Building First floor.

Deadline: 4th August, 2011