COVID-19: British expat raising awareness of palliative care in Oman

Muscat: British expat Maggie Jeans came to Oman on a pleasant January morning in 1991 with her late husband, Professor W D Jeans. She loved the place and the people so much that she has made it her second home.

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Back in 1991, when Professor W D Jeans came to Oman, to set up a clinical programme at the then new Sultan Qaboos University’s College of Medicine, Maggie pitched her part to establish the Education Office.

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“Oman is a fascinating place to live and also a beautiful country. It has made enormous progress in a short space of time particularly in the important field of Education,” she says.

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Raise awareness

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The seamless flow of life’s energy took a turn when Maggie’s husband died of cancer in 2015. Resilient Maggie recovered from the shock and established Oman Palliative Care.

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“Our first objective is to raise awareness of this issue and support initiatives in this area. COVID presents a particular challenge in palliative care. Visitors are not allowed and patients all over world die alone without family and friends. This is the worst sort of death.”

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Palliative care improves the quality of life for patients and their families who are facing the challenges associated with life-threatening illness.

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In its infancy

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In Oman, palliative care is still in its infancy, although there are many initiatives on the horizon. OPC aims to act as a focal point and raising awareness in the community, supporting these initiatives in any way it can and connecting with similar groups internationally.

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Maggie has also run the British Business Forum in Oman for many years, which supports UK Oman business. In 2016 Maggie was awarded an OBE for services to Omani British relations, by Prince Charles when he visited Oman.

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