Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust has appointed the county’s first acute-based Admiral nurse to offer specialist nursing support and care for patients with dementia and their families.
Tracey Frowde, who has worked at the hospital since 1989, has been appointed to the post due to her wealth of dementia and acute nursing knowledge as well as her experience in leadership, said the trust.
Ms Frowde said she was “excited” about her new appointment, which was funded through local community donations.
She said her post supported the trust’s “vision and its commitment” to patients with the condition, which has also included developing a new dementia-friendly ward.
“I’ve been lucky to be completely included and listened to throughout the design process and delivery, to ensure the nurses’ voice was heard, and as a result I feel we have achieved something special for the older community to improve their experience whilst in hospital,” she said.
Cornish hospital appoints dementia specialist nurse
She added: Having volunteered in nursing homes with St John’s Ambulance as a child, I set out in my nursing profession to work with older people – to care, relieve, comfort, respect, and give back to them. As an Admiral nurse, I will be able to do this.”
Dementia UK, which overseas Admiral nurses, said they were an “invaluable asset” in hospitals where the patient was usually being treated for a medical or surgical reason, rather than dementia.
Admiral nurses were proven to minimise the distress that some patients with a diagnosis of dementia felt in a hospital environment, while providing other staff with training and coping strategies to help them work with patients with dementia.
Community-based Admiral nurses were introduced to Cornwall for the first time in 2013.