Hospice nurse’s ‘privileged’ role at Blackpool Victoria Hospital

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A Trinity Hospice nurse who has transferred to the hospice’s palliative care team at Blackpool Victoria Hospital says she feels privileged to be working alongside hospital colleagues.

 

Kirsty Jones is currently based at Blackpool Victoria Hospital

Kirsty Jones is currently based at Blackpool Victoria Hospital

Kirsty Jones, who was a nurse on Trinity’s In-patient Unit for four years, says she feels she is making a huge difference to local patients.

Kirsty recently joined the hospice Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) team at Blackpool Victoria Hospital, and says seeing patients at a different stage in their palliative journey

has been an eye-opener.

where she feels like she is making a huge difference in people’s care.

She is also helping to educate staff across the whole hospital about palliative and end-of-life care.

Kirsty, 43, said: “Being at the hospital, you’re a completely different trajectory in a patient’s journey.

“On the In-patient Unit, patients are aware of their condition – they’re quite far on with their symptoms and may be approaching the end of their lives, and coming in for symptom

management.

“Here at the hospital, we’re looking at a lot of people who may have been referred to us just a few days after receiving their diagnosis. Or they may be really unwell with their condition

while they’re still having treatment.

“You’re just looking at patients from a completely different angle as you do from the hospice.

“You’re looking for reversible causes; why are your bloods like that and how can we change that? Why are you feeling like that and how can we change it? Where is that infection

coming from and how can we treat it?

“When you’ve put a patient forward for a bed at the hospice, you really feel like you’ve made a difference to them.

“They may just be having symptoms of their condition that they can’t manage – that they’re really struggling with, and you know they can get sorted at the hospice

and back home again, feeling much more comfortable.”

The CNS team at the hospital has recently been extended, taking on more nurses and Health Care Assistants, and covering the hospital seven days a week instead of just fivedays.

It means that no matter when a patient comes into hospital needing palliative care, they can access it.

Kirsty said: “We are receiving a lot of referrals to help get people out of hospital; making advanced care plans and getting people discharged is a massive part of the job here at thehospital.

“Usually, by the time a patient has come onto the In-patient Unit at the hospice, it has already been established where they want to have their care, and where they want to die.

Some people in the hospital are not even aware they have the choice.”

Kirsty said she and her colleagues visit other departments in the hospital each day to help inform staff of the importance of good palliative care, and to make sure they know how andwhen to contact the Trinity team.

“The In-patient Unit underpins everything that I know, and it’s a privilege to be able to go out and share that knowledge with other medical professionals,” she said.

The Trinity CNS team at the hospital has recently launched a new project to ensure people who have a palliative condition and come into the emergency department are assessed andfast-tracked either back home or into the hospice to receive the care they need in a the place of their choice, avoiding an unnecessary hospital admission.

Kirsty added: “No day is the same as a Trinity nurse in the hospital. You go in, check your referrals then spend time with the patients, making sure they can access the right care in aplace that’s right for them. It’s such a privilege to be involved in someone’s care like that.”

Trinity Hospice is a charity and costs more than £9 million each year to run, reaching local patients and their families when they need it most.

It is calling on local people to sponsor nurses like Kirsty, so they can continue to give outstanding care to all who need it across the Fylde coast.

To find out more, visit www.trinityhospice.co.uk/sponsor-a-nurse.