Sally Hall , Andrew Davies
International Journal of Palliative Nursing, Vol. 19, Iss. 3, 21 Mar 2013, pp 148 - 150
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.