Monday, May 2, 2011

Role of nurses in chronic illness/long term care

Here is a guest post by Eric Stevenson.

Eric Stevenson is a health and safety advocate who resides in Orlando Florida.

Role of nurses in chronic illness/long term care

The role of a nurse is often lost in translation when it comes to patients with terminal and chronic illnesses. Some may write them off as an afterthought, but continued research has shown that nurses all over are having a major effect on patients with chronic illness, especially in a monitoring role.

For many of those with chronic or terminal illnesses, around the clock monitoring and care are often a necessity. It seems that nurses are truly the only option for this type of care. In the past, patients would usually be cared by a family doctor throughout their treatment process. In today’s medical world, most patients are seeing specialized medicine and physicians. Throughout the influx and changing of different physicians, the nurse is often the one who may have the best eye for the patient, primarily because of the extended amount of time that they are around.

A nurse is often able to see the different changes and attitudes of a patient, as well as the way they are reacting to medicine. They will usually also play a large role in keeping families and friends aware of the treatment process, keeping them educated and knowledgeable about the process. For these patients who will often deal with extended amounts of treatment and therapy, the nurse is often the one consistent throughout the process. Even more so important is this consistency of a nurse. In today’s world of medicine, much is in and out, fast paced and speedy. A consistent nurse allows a patient someone who can answer questions and provide some personality and intimacy into the health care regimen.

Recent research into diabetes and heart disease patients has been taken to measure the importance of a nurse’s role in their health care process. This research allowed for a structured process of visits and monitoring from a nurse, continuing to show how important a nurse can be for patients with terminal illness, especially in battling depression

A good example of a terminal illness that nurses can play a large role in is with patients of mesothelioma. Certainly a nurse is able to have an effect on all patients, but to those with terminal illness, they can be especially important. This disease in specific can benefit from the care of a nurse because of the extremely short outlook that many patients have. For example, mesothelioma life expectancy is only an average of a year or less. A nurse’s time with some of these patients is critical because just like most diseases with short spans after diagnosis, it’s critical that they be given as much positivity and support in cherishing their time. The closeness that a nurse can often provide can be especially important with these patients.

Certainly a nurse can play a large role in any type of situation. For people who are suffering from terminal and chronic illness, a nurse can be of extra importance, however. Allowing for someone who is likely more familiar with a patients case to be consistently around, will allow for patients to develop a familiarity and comfort in their treatment and therapy process.

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1 comment:

  1. This article was very helpful...thankyou