Describe the agency setting.
Compassionate Care Hospice, located in Tauton, Ma, primarily care for patients, and, or clients in their homes. Various programs are offered to patients such as: nursing homes and hospitals, which are the most common. Respite care is available for inpatients on a short-term basis, and is for the purpose of providing carer givers time away from the care recipient.

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What is the community nurse’s position in the agency?
E.S., the clinical director of services was interviewed. She is a registered nurse herself and is responsible for the implementation, delivery, coordination and supervision of the services provided by the hospice. Other responsibilities include: revising and writing of treatment plans, medication administration (especially analgesia), monitoring vital signs and basic cares for the patients.

Which basic education subject helped the nurse to prepare for this role?
The registered nurse indicated that she holds a Bachelor of Science degree, and has seven years of clinical experience, which include five years in a managerial role within the hospice environment. She has also worked as an emergency nurse for fifteen years. The focus of her practice is to ensure that the patients’ pain is managed, and ensuring the patients is psychologically taken care of.

What is the main focus of the service?
The main aim is providing basic cares to patients, such as pain management, assistance with showering or bathing, and medication supervision. Giving emotional support to the patients and their families, and reassurance to the family that their family member is in the best hands possible. Maintaining excellent communication with the families and explaining what is needed, in order to care for their family member. This includes assistance and emotional support with end of life issues. “We do not take that role for granted.”

The hospice community provides primary, secondary and tertiary prevention, and hazardous products are banned from the facility, therefore mandatory safety regulations are followed. For those who struggle with progressive diseases, daily screenings and exams are provided to detect changes early during the disease process. Counselling and support groups are available, and seminars and training to address care plans and cultural sensitivity are available to the staff. Language barriers, access to healthcare, religion, cultural diversity and end of life issues can potentially become problematic if training is not available to staff.

It is the family members who primarily pay for the services provided by the hospice community. Therefore, care for the patient will be affected if payments are missed, in which case we would then work together with the family. Attempts are made to accommodate the patient as much as possible, until they can be transferred to a facility, which is more suitable to the family’s budget.

In conclusion, the information gained, has changed my views of the community nurse to a positive attitude. Nurses, regardless of the environment they work in, deserve respect for the grace and passion they display in their work. They are responsible for the comfort, and care of the patients and their families. It is a great responsibility to care for someone and have their life in your hands on a daily basis, because one mistake can come at a great cost. Therefore, all nurses should be valued, the way in which doctors are regarded in their profession.