Date Published: 14 October 2006

New specialist Matron team to boost care for heart failure patients in Lincolnshire

Care for heart failure patients in Lincolnshire has received a major boost with the funding of three new specialist ?community matrons' by the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

Jane Scrafton, Steve Chadwick and Martin Melville have been appointed as BHF Heart Failure Community Matrons, and will work across both health and social care networks to ensure their patients receive a holistic package of care for this long-term condition.

It is the latest move by the BHF to grow its UK-wide network of Heart Nurses, and is also part of the Delivering Choice Programme in Lincolnshire . Initiated by Marie Curie Cancer Care, the programme is a major collaboration between health, social and charitable organisations in the county, aimed at giving patients a better choice about where they are cared for towards the end of their lives.

Since October 2005, the BHF has been supporting four existing Heart Failure Specialist Nurses and one Heart Failure Community Matron in the county, providing educational and organisational resources.

Now, with the appointment of this new community-based matron team, the BHF has further extended its work in helping heart failure patients in Lincolnshire . The three matrons, whilst funded by the BHF, are employed by the new Lincolnshire Primary Care Trust. Jane is based in Saxilby, Steve in Boston and Martin in Grantham.

More than 900,000 people are living with heart failure in the UK , most of whom receive too little care and support. It's hoped that Lincolnshire will set a benchmark of care for the rest of the country to follow.

Jackie Lodge, Head of Cardiac Care at the BHF, said:

We're delighted to welcome Jane, Steve and Martin on to the BHF's growing team of specialist heart failure nurses and matrons in Lincolnshire .

_ Our work in Lincolnshire is a reflection of the need for heart failure patients to be given better access to care services when their condition deteriorates.

_ These appointments further demonstrate our determination to improve that quality of care ? and to spread the lessons we learn from Lincolnshire to other parts of the country.”

Working alongside the charity's community matrons and specialist nurses are three key services developed as a result of the Delivering Choice Programme:

  • A Palliative Care Coordination Centre based in Lincoln , which provides the booking of home care and is a central point of communication for palliative care services and education across the county.
  • A Rapid Response Team currently covering Boston and South Holland , resulting in an estimated 88 visits to A+E being avoided by providing alternate care arrangements in the community.
  • A Discharge Community Link Nurse Initiative in Lincoln and Boston to enable early, managed discharge from hospital for patients

The Delivering Choice programme is due to run until the end of 2007 and its success will be evaluated by Sheffield University .

To be able to fund these nurses the BHF relies on local fundraising and volunteers. To find out more about how you can support the BHF, contact the BHF regional office on 01623 624 558.


Source: British Heart Foundation (BHF).

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