The LOROS Community Nurse Specialist Team provides specialist palliative care and advice to patients and families in their own homes.
“We always put aside the time to talk to patients. Appointments in hospital and with the GP are usually just 10 minutes, but we sit and listen to their concerns. I think that’s what people appreciate the most actually, giving them time. During the Covid pandemic GPs were not offering as much face to face contact”, says Louise Wright, CNS Manager.
“We support the whole family too, and act as a point of contact for them. So if, as often happens, a patient has a query about their medication, rather than spend ages trying to get through to their GP to check, they can give us a quick call and find out the answer. Usually they will be able to speak to their own CNS nurse too.
“The CNS team work closely with lots of other teams – both within LOROS and other organisations. That means we can refer patients to other services which can help them and also that we can respond rapidly if they start to feel very poorly and their needs are changing. This can avoid hospital admission which we aim to do.
“During Covid our workload increased a lot as we concentrated on getting people out of hospital and keeping them in their homes. We supported them as much as possible through telephone and video calls, which worked well for patients as many didn’t want visitors in their houses. We’ll try and keep this contact going as it suited some people but we appreciate at times a face to face contact can enhance our role when making decisions for our patients.”