A day in the life of a Personal Nurse Adviser

At the start of my day all the RedArc nurses get together for a short meeting to discuss any issues that need to be discussed.

We also get together throughout the day if we need to discuss a specific case or have concerns about a patient.

We work in an environment where we need to be kept up to date with any changes. I regularly check my emails to ascertain any information that I need to act upon.

I start to telephone my patients after about 10.00am. If it is a new patient I check their diagnosis and if it is something unusual that I am not familiar with, I then spend time researching. It is important to have knowledge and information to hand if I am unfamiliar with the condition.

Here are some examples of some of my patients that I speak to:

  • A recent referral is for a family whose baby was born with a very rare health condition. They are struggling to cope as he has complex issues. Before I contacted them, I did lots of research to find out what medical issues they could be experiencing. His dad has explained that the child needs 24 hour care but they are unsure how to access more support. After a considerable amount of searching and speaking to various organisations I found 2 that could possibly provide support. I was then able to contact the father and send him the details of these organisations for him to consider.  If he agrees I will be able to facilitate the support. He finds my calls very comforting.
  • Following a discussion with a patient who has emotional issues, we agreed that she would benefit from a course of counselling. I searched for appropriate counsellors for the patient’s condition, using an accredited counselling organisation.  When I found the most appropriate counsellor I then contacted them to see if they would be happy to provide counselling. We made all the arrangements; I then sent a letter to the counsellor and patient to confirm the agreement. I will continue to support this young lady for as long as she needs.
  • A patient that I have contacted recently has had a fractured leg and will benefit from physiotherapy. RedArc has access to managed physiotherapy services. I contacted the admin team for the physiotherapy services to ask if they would be happy to arrange physiotherapy for the patient. I sent an email to confirm and the physiotherapy is being organised for my patient.  He is relieved and is looking forward to the sessions.
  • Another of my patients is in need of a second opinion for their medical condition, I researched appropriate Consultants who specialise in the health condition, and who are available in their local private hospitals. I then spoke to the Doctor’s Medical Secretary and organised appointments.  Once I had spoken to them I then sent an appropriate letter to the Secretary and patient. I will speak with the patient again once they have had their appointment, and as often as they need going forward. I am responsible for sourcing and reviewing some of the resources which we all send to patients. I update and re-order support information and booklets which we send to patients. I try to fit this into my busy day.

Although each nurse has their own case load, as a team we are very intuitive of each other’s. Sometimes one of my colleagues can be having a long and emotional call; I feel it is really important to be available for them afterwards to give them a chance to offload and maybe explore further ways that we can help the patient.

I spend a lot of time on the telephone talking to my patients, helping with their problems and providing a listening ear.  This is very valuable to people in these busy times and often they say that it is the first opportunity they have had to talk about how they are coping.

Sometimes colleagues patients’ phone in and if their Personal Nurse Adviser is not in the office that day, we do our utmost to help them with any concerns they have and then liaise with their Nurse on their return.

Being a Personal Nurse Adviser is a very privileged position; people often confide in us, telling us things that they have not spoken about before. Sometimes they send photos of themselves maybe after treatment or on a fund raising event, or even a picture of the new grandchild or the dog!

Patients are always surprised and pleased to be able to speak to the same nurse (their nurse) every time they call, and to know that I will stay in touch for as long as they wish. We speak with patients when it is an extremely difficult time in their lives.  I try to put myself in their shoes and treat them as I would like to be treated.

Fortunately, our organisation acknowledges and appreciates how much we invest in our patients and encourages us to access time out and relaxation therapies.  I feel my days are very busy and provide me with job satisfaction knowing I have been able to provide support for my patients which could make such a difference in their lives.

Caroline Owen, Personal Nurse Adviser

Whenever you need it help and support is only a phone call away...

When in need of a Friendly Voice contact RedArc on 01244 625180 Monday-Friday 9am-5pm. All you need is your income protection contract Membership Number.

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