International Nurses Day

Present at some of life’s most precious moments, and there to hold our hands through the most devastating. Now more than ever it’s important to acknowledge the contributions made by all the amazing nurses throughout the world.

Today is the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale, and the first ever W.H.O designated year of the Nurse and the Midwife. A special day to help acknowledge and say “Thank You” to all the nurses and midwives for all that they do, especially during these times. 💚

Our own team of wonderful Community Specialist Stoma Nurses (or SCNs) have shared their tips and how they are finding working during these times. Take a read below, and let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Firstly, some words from our Lead Stoma Nurse, Alison, on how this situation has changed how many nurses are working and meeting their patient’s needs:

My role most days usually involves helping at two Acute Hospitals, this I do in the mornings working with the Colorectal Nurses, and in the afternoons I provide Community visits to the patients that are discharged from Hospital. Initially when COVID-19 started we were screening all patients by telephone before a home visit was carried out to ensure they weren’t displaying any symptoms.

At the beginning of March hospitals were preparing for the virus, all visitors were stopped and clinics were all held over the telephone. Walking in the hospital was slightly eerie as there was no one other than staff in the corridors and on the wards. In some of the Hospitals general wards were closed to patients and transformed into Intensive Care units making more ITU beds available with ventilators.

In the UK we have a group of Stoma Nurses that evolved from World Council of Enterostomal Therapists (WCET) some years ago and we work very much with WCET still. We are the Association of Stoma Care Nurses UK (ASCN). Due to patients no longer being able to receive home visits the ASCN quickly produced a self-help guide for patients. Our practice is now that we phone patients at home the day after they have been discharged from hospital and ask all the usual questions about diet, sleep, stoma management and general well being. Patients are invited to email/text/WhatsApp pictures of their stoma/skin if they are concerned. Depending on the outcome of the call they are sent skin protection treatments or new pouches to try if necessary and advice on high output etc is given if required. Phone calls are repeated as often as it is necessary to do maybe two- three times per week. All patients are required to be self-caring or live with some one that can care for their stoma 24 hours per day usually but it is even more important at this time. Once we have made the initial phone call we also send the ASCN self help guidelines out to patients and ensure they are registered with Respond for their supplies.

If you need support or have any questions about your stoma, please get in touch with your Stoma Nurse, or click here to be taken to our nurse page where we have FAQs and tips you may find useful.

Here are some images with tips and messaging on from our Nurses Ruth, Pauline and Christine:
























We hope you have enjoyed our latest blog post and found the tips from our nurse team useful. Make sure to take care of yourselves and your loved ones during this time, and remember there are lots of people available if you need some support. For more information on our award-winning service, or to find out how our nurse team could support you, click here or give us a call!


If you would like to learn more about our #BeTheChange campaign or get involved click here.

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