Community Palliative Care Nurse Specialist Team (PCNS)
The PCNS team of clinical nurse specialists visit patients in their own homes, nursing homes, community hospitals and other residential units. They provide advice and support to patients and their families with palliative care needs. The service works on a 365 days a year basis. Many of the team are nurse prescribers they give practical and immediate support to patients with symptoms that require palliation.
The team consists of 25 staff. Until recently most referrals were cancer patients but now the team has 5 members who specialise in non cancer diagnoses with designated specialist areas of interest.
The team assess patient & family needs and refer patients to other services as required. The PCNS team are responsible for the assessment of patients who may require admission to the hospice in-patient unit. The team receives around 1300 new patient referrals a year. There were over 33,000 clinical consultations last year; over 10,000 of these were face to face.