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Caring 24/7 - whatever the weather!

Our nurses and therapists are committed to delivering compassionate, quality care for vulnerable people with a wide variety of clinical needs, 365 days a year. So there was no way the recent snow was going to stop them!
 

Our patients are looked after by district nurses, clinical case managers, advanced nurse practitioners, complex care staff, rapid response nurses and therapists and rehabilitation assistants. As we provide 24-hour care, this includes  our evening and night nurses. 

Rupinder Chal, general manager of our integrated multidisciplinary teams, said that, while heavy snowfall will be quickly followed by deserved praise for hospital staff, there is relatively little highlighting of the commitment of those healthcare professionals working in community settings, delivering care to vulnerable patients in their own homes.

"Many of these patients are diabetic or receiving palliative care who would end up in hospital, if they did not receive a visit from the district nurses," said Rupinder.

"Many of our staff over the last three episodes of severe weather went above and beyond the call of duty. Many walked miles around the city to deliver care which is not easy when you are hampered by the deep snow and continuous icy patches.

"Staff that were off duty came in to help and some contacted their nearest teams to see if there was  any help that could be offered to patients near their homes. Some even booked hotels near their bases so they were able to get to work the next day.

nurse in wellies
District nurse Jennifer Coyne

We always knew that we had committed and dedicated staff and they deserve recognition for this as, even though they face day-to-day challenges, they still have more to give in order to deliver high quality patient care.

Rupinder explained that our evening community nursing service made use of 4x4 vehicles made available in extreme weather conditions. Some colleagues walked to patients on foot, where possible, while other colleagues  worked together to cover the phone calls back at base and co-ordinate patient visits across the city.


community nurses beat the snow.

Laurie Byrom and Jade Jenkins (pictured, left) work for a district nursing team in the east of the city.

“We managed to get our cars going and drove on the main roads, we then walked to the patients who live on the side roads," they explained.

"We then doubled up and supported each other with the call-outs.

Laurie and Jade were able to fulfil all their call-outs and only re-scheduled those patients that were not in need of urgent care and support.


  

District nurse Keeley Norton (pictured, right) was working on the Friday and Saturday evenings in early March when the snow fell suddenly.

She managed to drive her car to the area her calls were based and then - literally - walked the extra mile to make sure her patients received the care and support they needed.

“ I managed to get to the main road, then I parked up and walked to the patient to make sure he got his medication," she said.

District nurse Keeley Norton