Generous grants enable vital training for St Catherine’s community team

A charitable trust which owns one of the North West’s biggest property and construction companies is supporting patients with incurable conditions to receive the medication they need more quickly and easily through three generous grants made to St Catherine’s Hospice.

The Eric Wright Charitable Trust, which owns the Eric Wright Group, has supported the hospice charity with three grants of £10,000 over the past three years.

The funding has been used to provide cover in the St Catherine’s community team of Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS), while members complete Non Medical Prescribing (NMP) training.

The qualification – which has now been awarded to six of the nine-strong CNS team – allows the nurses to prescribe or amend doses of certain relevant palliative care medications for their patients without the need for a doctor.

The result is patients receiving the drugs they need to be comfortable at home more quickly and conveniently.

Dr Andrew Fletcher, Medical Director at St Catherine’s Hospice, said: “Simply saying that the money has been used to back-fill a nursing position to allow training to be carried out doesn’t get across the very significant impact this is having on our patients who are living and dying at home.

“The NMP training that this funding has helped to enable means patients who would benefit from a new or altered dose of pain or symptom management medication are getting their prescriptions there and then, as part of the same CNS visit, instead of having to wait for a doctor to then act on the nurse’s request.

“It is having a particularly profound effect on those patients who are at the end of life, who wish to die at home, but who would benefit from changes or increases in their medication to ensure they are comfortable. In these situations, every minute is precious and makes a huge difference – particularly for family members who want to see and remember their loved ones at peace.

“As well as the benefits for patients and their loved ones, the enhanced service is also easing pressures on the already extremely busy GPs working across Chorley, Preston and South Ribble.

“We’d like to say a huge thank you to the trust for their continued support and wonderful generosity.”

Michael Collier, Chair of the Trust, said: “We are thrilled to offer these grant donations to such a deserving charity, which supports the needs of many local families who depend on the organisation for their care and excellent support networks.”

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