Community nurses ‘need new skills and more resources’ for Covid-19

Much attention is given to Covod-19 in relation to intensive care. But as Rebecca Gilroy writes “nurses working in community settings will be playing just as critical role in the response, facing three key challenges when it comes to Covid-19: a lack of personal protective equipment (PPE), an absence of priority health staff testing and unprecedented demands on a foundation of chronic workforce shortages.” Testing is urgently needed in care homes and community settings, for safety and keeping the workforce.

Providing palliative care to an increased number of people with a highly infectious disease in the community would require more resources (like equipment which is available only in hospitals now) and new ways of working. Even it has to be considered, that family members may be asked to do things that “might have been unthinkable” because they would be done by health care professionals in ‘normal circumstances’. Rapid discharging from hospitals, due to the lack of beds, will require more facilities and resources for care in the communities.