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J Adv Nurs ; 2022 May 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1868665


AIM: To explore how General Practice Nurses experience implementing change at pace and scale in delivering care during consecutive waves of the COVID-19 pandemic. To evaluate the impact of changes to general practice nurses' working practices on professional wellbeing. BACKGROUND: In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, general practice rapidly and extensively changed care delivery. There has been little exploration of the experiences of General Practice Nurses and care delivery, job satisfaction, workload, stress and professional support. DESIGN: A qualitative case study design of three to five general practice case sites will explore General Practice Nurses' experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic. The study was funded and approved by the General Nursing Council Trust in June 2021. University ethics approval was gained in July 2021. Health Research Authority approval has been obtained [IRAS:30353. Protocol number: R23982. Ref 21/HRA/5132. CPMS: 51834]. METHODS: Data will consist of focus groups and/or semi-structured interviews with General Practice Nurses, primary healthcare team members and other key informants. Business/strategy and nurse team meetings relating to workforce planning/review will be observed. Documents will be analysed and routinely collected general practice data will provide descriptive contextualisation at each site. The study will be theoretically underpinned by the Non-adoption, Abandonment, Scale-up, Spread and Sustainability Framework and data analysed using framework analysis. DISCUSSION: General Practice Nurses have a unique sphere of knowledge and undertake specific work in primary care. This workforce is challenged by recruitment, retention and retirement issues, leading to the loss of highly experienced and knowledgeable professionals. It is important to explore how working practices brought about by Covid-19 affect General Practice Nurses. IMPACT: This study will explore working practices brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic to inform care delivery, patient care and support General Practice Nursing workforce wellbeing and will highlight and mitigate negative aspects of novel and changing care delivery. Key factors in implementing and supporting future practice and change implementation will be developed. TRIAL REGISTRATION: CPMS: 51834.

BMJ Open ; 11(7): e045469, 2021 07 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1329054


BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on the care home sector, with residents accounting for up to half of all deaths in Europe. The response to acute illness in care homes plays a particularly important role in the care of residents during a pandemic. Digital recording of a National Early Warning Score (NEWS), which involves the measurement of physical observations, started in care homes in one area of England in 2016. Implementation of a NEWS intervention (including equipment, training and support) was accelerated early in the pandemic, despite limited evidence for its use in the care home setting. OBJECTIVES: To understand how a NEWS intervention has been used in care homes in one area of North-East England during the COVID-19 pandemic, and how it has influenced resident care, from the perspective of stakeholders involved in care delivery and commissioning. METHODS: A qualitative interview study with care home (n=10) and National Health Service (n=7) staff. Data were analysed using thematic analysis. RESULTS: Use of the NEWS intervention in care homes in this area accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic. Stakeholders felt that NEWS, and its associated education and support package, improved the response of care homes and healthcare professionals to deterioration in residents' health during the pandemic. Healthcare professionals valued the ability to remotely monitor resident observations, which facilitated triage and treatment decisions. Care home staff felt empowered by NEWS, providing a common clinical language to communicate concerns with external services, acting as an adjunct to staff intuition of resident deterioration. CONCLUSIONS: The NEWS intervention formed an important part of the care home response to COVID-19 in the study area. Positive staff perceptions now need to be supplemented with data on the impact on resident health and well-being, workload, and service utilisation, during the pandemic and beyond.

COVID-19 , Early Warning Score , England/epidemiology , Europe , Humans , Nursing Homes , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , State Medicine