Worthing cancer nurses will get a technological boost in delivering better care to their patients. Specialist nurses at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust will be armed with high-spec laptops, thanks to a successful £59,300 bid to the government’s Nursing Technology Fund.
The money will buy 42 of the latest lightweight, portable laptops with enhanced wi-fi capabilities, to be used by the Trust’s team of clinical nurse specialists. This key group of nursing staff will have better access to the cancer database for information and documentation, results and communication systems, and will ensure that their time is used more efficiently.
Clinical nurse specialists are usually based in clinics rather than in offices, making computer access difficult. With the new laptops at their fingertips they will be able to immediately record patient details electronically, without having to write everything down and type it up later.
Clare Dikken, lead nurse for cancer services at the Trust, said: “This will have a really positive impact on the working environment for our nurses, and in turn that will help to improve care for patients. Our specialist nurses will have better access to information, test results, and emails, and will be able to work more efficiently, freeing up time to spend with their patients.
“The number of cancer patients is rising quickly, by approximately 8% a year, and so we have to work more effectively to keep pace, and to keep improving the care we can provide. We want our nurses to be able to spend as much time as they can with their patients, and to be able to use that time well.”
The Trust employs clinical nurse specialists for each cancer type, at both Worthing and St Richard’s in Chichester.
They are the first and main point of contact for cancer patients, providing information, insight and support throughout their cancer journey. The nurses also assess their patient’s needs to ensure any concerns are being addressed.
Clare added: “The clinical nurse specialists are an essential part of the cancer services we provide for patients. A diagnosis of cancer has a profound impact on a person and their family, and it affects all aspects of their life, so it is essential to have someone who they can turn to answer their questions, provide expertise, and direct them towards the support they need.”