The role of Admiral Nurses in care homes has a significant impact on the care and support offered to care home residents living with a dementia according to a recently published report.
The Orders of St John Care Trust (OSJCT or the Trust) commissioned the research work after obtaining a grant from the Burdett Trust for Nursing, as part of its ‘Delivering Dignity through Empowered Leadership’ funding.
The project, entitled ‘Maximising the benefit of the My Home Life Admiral Nurse (MHLAN) specialist post in the care home sector: perceived benefits for residents, informal carers and staff; optimum case load and identification of a business case’, examined the role of specialist Admiral Nurses operating within OSJCT’s 70 care homes. The research work was carried out by the Association for Dementia Studies at the University of Worcester.
Victoria Elliot, OSJCT’s Principal Care Consultant, Research & Innovation said: “This comprehensive evaluation of the Admiral Nurse role within care homes has underlined the fact that Admiral Nurses significantly improve the quality of support that care teams are able to provide to residents with a dementia and their families. As an organisation, we certainly recognise the added value such a role brings to the person centred care service we offer. We hope the report will provide a useful source of information for other care home providers who are seeking to support staff, improve links with the community and, above all, improve the quality of the care and support they provide to residents.
We very much appreciate the work carried out by the team from the University of Worcester and of course the funding provided by the Burdett Trust, without which this evaluation project would not have been possible.”
The main conclusions of the report are:
- The need to transfer residents living with a dementia from one home to another can be avoided, thereby strengthening the business case for the role of the Admiral Nurse
- Admiral Nurses by skilled use of their knowledge, expertise, support, and perceived independence had a positive impact on the culture of the care home
- There is evidence of an upskilling of employees at all levels of the organisation
- There is greater awareness of the services provided by OSJCT and improved interaction with the wider multidisciplinary team, as a result of Admiral Nurse driven activities
Dr Simon Evans, Head of Research with the Association for Dementia Studies at the University of Worcester said: “This research demonstrates the value of Admiral Nursing in care homes and the potential it has to improve support for residents, families and staff. This is important at a time when increasing numbers of residents have a dementia. Our report makes a number of key recommendations for organisations that want to adopt this successful approach to dementia care.
Hilda Hayo, Chief Admiral Nurse/CEO at Dementia UK commented: “As a charity we have been impressed by the standards of care provided by the Orders of St John Care Trust and we are delighted to have Admiral Nurses working in their care home settings. This independent research study (conducted by the University of Worcester and funded by the Burdett Trust) gives clear evidence of how successful this arrangement has been and we at Dementia UK welcome the findings and will continue to develop these further in the future.”
You can access the report at: http://www.osjct.co.uk/news/admiral-nurse-role-provides-valuable-support/.