Primary Palliative Care Research Group

Living with advanced heart failure in Kenya

Experiences and expectations of patients living with advanced heart failure in Kenya

Kenya, like other countries in sub-Saharan Africa, faces a double burden of both infectious and chronic life limiting diseases. Cardiovascular diseases account for more than 10% of deaths. Yet, current palliative care services cater for patients living and dying with HIV/AIDS and cancer. In order to develop services which meet patients’ needs, we are conducting serial qualitative interviews with people living with advanced heart failure.

These interviews allow for a deeper understanding of patients’ lived experience and expectations. Preliminary findings reveal that patients experience significant dynamic physical, psychological and spiritual distress. Notably, psychological distress is heightened in younger patients and exacerbates the cost of care. Patients expect to be cured of their illness and receive assistance with accessing treatment.

This study will inform appropriate policy, practice, training and future research for patients living and dying with heart failure in Africa.


University of Nairobi PhD studentship

PhD candidate

Kellen Kimani


Liz Grant, Scott Murray