DISTRICT Nurses from Bass Coast Health are stepping up to meet extra demand for their services during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The District Nursing and Palliative Care Team has 25 permanent part-time staff and four casual staff supporting people in the Bass Coast Shire seven days a week.

“During the Pandemic, we have seen service growth, with increasing demand on the District Nursing team. People prefer to be in their own home where possible,” District Nursing and Palliative Care Manager Emma Grabham said.

The nurses currently provide care to 217 clients across the Bass Coast and are protecting every one of them by implementing screening questions and wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) each time they visit a client.

“We have increased infection control measures in our office and our cars. This adds additional time to the nurse’s day, however the team has

taken all of this in their stride,” Emma reflected.

“Our lovely clients have adapted extremely well, and their understanding and support has made our jobs as nurses flow smoothly.”

District Nurses have held scenario training situations to aid in their preparation for COVID-19 and the probability of caring for COVID positive clients in the community.

Ongoing scenario-based exercises and education will continue to ensure everyone is well trained.

“We have processes in place out on the road and in the office if a client or staff member tests positive to COVID-19,” Emma said.

“I feel very confident that all staff are well prepared to handle any situation that may arise, in being able to protect themselves and their clients when caring for people in their homes.”

The District Nursing Service provides a range of nursing specific services for people in their own home to support independence and improve health and wellbeing.

The service can provide:

* Wound care management, continence care, support and monitoring for client medication management, client support in stoma care, assistance with managing diabetes, and comprehensive assessment of client needs Nursing services for clients receiving cancer care for symptom management, dressings for treatment devices such as catheters and disconnection of chemotherapy can be provided, in close liaison with the treating chemotherapy unit and doctor.

* In-home nursing support for clients discharged from hospital who may need short-term follow up nursing care.

Referrals and enquiries can be made to distristnursing@basscoasthealth.org.au or telephone 56719219.