Patients wishing to spend their final days at home are facing a more urgent need for palliative care night nurses than at any point in the pandemic, the Irish Cancer Society has said.
Requests for the Society’s Night Nurses, who offer a free service for end-of-life patients provided in their own home, increased by 38% in Dublin for the first four months of 2021 compared with the same period last year.
While there has been a general rise in demand for the service across the country during the pandemic as patients seek to spend their final days in the company of their family at home, the impact of this trend has been particularly felt in some areas facing staffing shortages.
Irish Cancer Society Director of Services Donal Buggy said: “Now more than ever in Dublin we urgently need to recruit more Night Nurses so we can continue to provide this incredibly important service to anyone who might need it, so we are encouraging registered nurses who may be interested to please get in touch with us.
“The last 14 months since the start of the pandemic have been extremely challenging for our Night Nurses, but we know that dying at home surrounded by friends and family provides real comfort to patients in these difficult times, and we believe that anyone who can be cared for in their home should be able to have that option.”
The Irish Cancer Society Night Nursing Service is always complementary to the community specialist Palliative Care Team or the community Primary Care Team.