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New night time pallative care scheme is launched in Rostrevor

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

A NIGHT time palliative care initiative is to be launched in Rostrevor.

The service will help those patients who wish to spend their last days at home.

The medical and advisory initiative is being spearheaded by the local residents committee which includes local GP Henry Mc Laughlin, district nurse Glenda Hughes and Marie Curie nurse Dympna Devlin.

"Currently local residents who wish to die at home are supported during day time hours by combination of local GP, Macmillan and Marie Curie nurses, district nurses and carers," said Dr McLaughlin.

"A twilight district nurse service operates until 11pm alongside 'out of hours' services. However, 'out of hours' is also responsible for emergency cases and delays in home visits are inevitable.

"In some cases, the Marie Curie Service can assist by providing overnight stay but rarely more than three nights a week. A roving Marie Curie service is available, but with just one nurse allocated to the entire Southern Board area, the responsiveness of that service is sometimes limited.

"It is here, during these often difficult night times hours, that LIFE & TIME see a gap in support - so the proposed new service will focus on fundraising to service this need," explained Dr McLaughlin.

LIFE & TIME is a proposal in its infancy, but is being developed in order to offer advice or administration of medication after 11pm - where existing services are unavailable in a timely fashion.

It's intended that a qualified person will be available either by phone to provide advice and, where required, stay overnight to support the patient and family.

It is anticipated that the service would be community based and funded, operating in compliment to existing services.

In order to run the project LIFE & TIME need to raise to funds and alongside that wish to recruit nurses and/or doctors to deliver the service.

To kick start the initiative the Rostrevor group of cyclists, THE ROSSI, have committed to undertake a 150 mile cycle from Rostrevor to Lough Neagh in August whilst other events are planned for later in the year.

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