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DR SCOTT'S SURGERY.

ON Friday one of our fabulous team of district nurses rang me and asked if they could write this week's article. I said "yes!", so here it is in their own words: We, the district nurses, are part of a dedicated team of professionals who undertake complex nursing assessment, provide exceptional palliative care and undertake chronic disease management, yet the public's perception of our service provision varies considerably. We are viewed by many as nurses who provide: Simplistic nursing care Incontinence supplies Order wheelchairs and walking aids.

This perception alters when the public requires our specialist services.

Some examples of this are: The provision of palliative and end-of-life care for a loved one allowing them to remain at home. The patient can then remain in familiar surrounding with close family and friends, avoiding unnecessary admission to hospital or hospice, without compromising quality of care. This highly dedicated team offer support not only to the patient but also to close family and friends. This almost always provides comfort to a bereaved relative or family member following the death of a loved one, in the knowledge that they carried out the patient's last wishes. They can gain support from the fact that they did all they possibly could.

The district nurses provide bereavement support to families following the death of a loved one depending on need. This provides continuous support for both the patient prior to death and the family following this sad event. Another example of the skills and dedication of the district nursing team is provision of highly skilled nursing care with regard to tissue viability.

This can range from the care of the elderly person with compromised skin and circulatory problems to bedridden young or elderly patients with complex medical conditions such as multiple sclerosis or spinal injuries.

This is a dynamic nursing service providing 24-hour nursing care, 365 days per year with a dedicated team working days, evenings and overnight.

District nurses are part of a multidisciplinary team working in close proximity with general practitioners, members of the primary healthcare team, allied health professionals, social services and the voluntary sector. District nurses are on many occasions the professional most frequently involved in the complex care of patients identifying changes in circumstances or condition.

They will then, utilising their advanced nursing skills, implement the required plan of nursing care or contact other professionals as and when required.

District nurses are all qualified nurses with advanced skills in community nursing, gained through a formal degree process and/or practical experience. Relevant skills to be a district nurse are excellent communication skills, an ability to work autonomously, plan and implement care provision and in today's environment be IT literate.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Jan 25, 2010
Words:448
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