Article

An evaluation of the activity of a 7-day, nurse-led specialist palliative care service in an acute district general hospital

Clinical Nurse Specialist in Palliative Care.
International journal of palliative nursing 03/2013; 19(3):148-50. DOI: 10.12968/ijpn.2013.19.3.148
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT

Introduction:
This report describes the activity of a new 7-day-per-week, nurse-led palliative care service in an acute district general hospital in the UK.

Methods:
The service is based in a hospital with an integral cancer centre. On the weekends, one clinical nurse specialist (CNS) is present within the hospital, with a consultant providing telephone support. The data for this report was obtained by reviewing the team's clinical database and the patients' individual clinical assessments.

Results:
During the first year, the CNSs undertook 651 face-to-face weekend consultations. Overall, 25% of the total consultations and 18% of new patient consultations were undertaken on the weekends. The primary reasons for reviewing patients on the weekends were pain (46%), other symptoms (27.5%), and patient on the Liverpool Care Pathway (17%). Overall, 23% of new patients died over the weekend or in the early hours of the Monday morning.

Conclusions:
This service evaluation provides evidence of the value of having a 7-day-per-week palliative care service in an acute district general hospital.

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