Ten Glasgow nurses are set to provide a new minor illness service to further increase the range of out-of-hours services available across the city.
The nurses recently completed a new training programme in minor illness management at Glasgow Caledonian University, the first programme of its kind in Glasgow.
The specially designed competency based programme provides the training and practical skills necessary to assess, treat of refer patients with a range of common minor illnesses. These include urinary tract infections, earache, sore throat, vomiting. diarrhoea, headache and backache.
The minor illness nurses, will work alongside GPs and nurses within NHS Greater Glasgow's existing general medical emergency service (GEMS NHS) which provides out-of-hours general medical advice and treatment to patients across the city.
Dr Norrie Gaw, Clinical Director of GEMS NHS, said: "This new service will complement and enhance our existing out-of-hours services and provide additional support to the out-of-hours teams based in the NHS Greater Glasgow's existing out-of-hours centres across the city.
Margaret Brown, Senior Nurse and Minor Illness Project Co-ordinator who also completed the programme, said: "All of the nurses undergoing this training are experienced practitioners and this project provides an excellent opportunity to further develop their skills, working closely in partnership with their GP colleagues."
The scheme, which is funded by NHS Greater Glasgow with support from NHS Education for Scotland (NES), was open to experienced nurses working in NHS Greater Glasgow and NHS 24. Three of the ten nurses who are employed by NHS 24 will work in new joint posts that enable them to divide their time between NHS 24 and NHS Greater Glasgow's out-of-hours service.
NHS 24's Nurse Director, Eunice E Muir, added: "NHS 24 welcomes this initiative, and we are very pleased to be working closely with our partners, NHS Greater Glasgow. Many of our nurses have dual roles where they work part-time tele-nursing in NHS 24 and part-time in a face-to-face clinical environment, giving them a wider range of professional development opportunities.NHS 24's recruitment programme actively supports joint appointments and dual roles."
Andrea Hiller, Lecturer, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Community Health, Glasgow Caledonian University, said: "Glasgow Caledonian University worked closely with doctors and nurses from NHS Greater Glasgow and NHS 24 to develop this programme and we look forward to continuing to work with them on the ongoing monitoring and assessment."
Mike Sabin, Programme Director for NES, said: "NES is committed to supporting educational solutions to service redesign and is an excellent example of a robust educational framework, linked to structured academic work, clinical assessment and service supervision."
The minor illness nurses, who will be known as GEMS Nurse Practitioners, will now complete an extended nurse prescribing course to enable them to prescribe a range of medication. Initially the nurses will be based in the existing GEMS NHS out-of-hours centers and, in the longer term, they will form part of the out-of-hours team within the new Victoria and Stobhill hospitals.
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