09 February 2016

Help fund essential nursing equipment

Suzanne (landscape)Rennie Grove Hospice Care is appealing to its supporters to help fund the essential equipment used daily by its nurses. 

Rennie Grove Hospice Care provides 24/7 responsive care in patients’ homes, aiming to prevent unnecessary hospital admissions and giving patients the choice to spend their final days at home.  Basic nursing equipment such as stethoscopes, tympanic (ear) thermometers and blood glucose monitors are a crucial part of the care offered by the charity.

Rennie Grove Hospice at Home nurse, Suzanne Fitzpatrick, explains: “As many of our patients are living longer thanks to advances in treatment, they often develop more complex medical conditions which need close monitoring and timely intervention.  Using basic nursing equipment, our nurses need to make detailed and frequent health assessments to ensure patients have the best possible quality of life.”

For example, a blood glucose monitor can identify elevated blood sugar levels.  Detected early, this can be easily resolved, but without intervention it could result in dehydration organ damage, and could even prove fatal.  A simple blood glucose monitor could prove to be a life-saver, especially for patients taking high-dose steroid medication who are at greater risk of raised blood sugar levels.

Another simple but crucial tool to monitor a patient’s condition is a stethoscope.  Suzanne adds: “Our nurses use stethoscopes regularly, not just to check a patient’s heart and lung function but also to monitor bowels for signs of obstruction.  Using the stethoscope regularly in this way can help prevent a medical emergency, whether the patient has cancer of the bowel or another life-limiting condition impacting on the bowel such as kidney failure, or is taking medication that can adversely affect the bowel.”

All the equipment used by the charity’s Hospice at Home nurses helps to pre-empt complications, prevent hospital admissions and prolong a patient’s life.  Suzanne says: “Managing a patient’s symptoms as soon as they occur can mean the difference between staying at home and being admitted to hospital.  By using vital nursing equipment during our visits - at any time of the day or night - we can keep track of a patient’s condition, provide immediate pain relief and help to keep other symptoms under control.”

“Each year we must raise around 85% of our annual £6.7 million running costs from our generous community” says Suzanne, “this may sound like a phenomenal amount to raise but by simply helping us to cover the smaller costs of nursing equipment you can easily make a difference to our patients and their families.” 

In this latest appeal to supporters, the charity is asking people to make a donation towards basic pieces of equipment likes stethoscopes and blood glucose monitors. To find out more and support this appeal visit www.renniegrove.org/equip, call 01442 890222 or text CARE to 60155 to donate £3 today.