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Long-term conditions don’t recognise the festive season

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While most people will be taking an extended break from work, nurses around the country will be delivering care to the one in four of the population with a long-term condition.

The symptoms of heart disease, COPD, asthma, diabetes and depression don’t take time off over Christmas. In fact some of these conditions are aggravated by the festive break and all it brings with it.

Kathryn godfrey2

Kathryn Godfrey

The financial stress of buying presents can pressurise those with heart disease; the eating and drinking indulgence present challenges for those with diabetes. Winter weather is not good for those with chronic respiratory disease. And of course the expectations of Christmas can be challenging for all of us and particularly those prone to depression.

So it’s business as usual for those with long-term conditions. And as a result nurses will be continuing to deliver the care that patients in hospital and those living in the community so urgently need.

Nurses face challenges every day to deliver high-quality care with stretched resources, but this is made even more difficult over the festive season.

Support services are even more depleted as many non-urgent services take a break over Christmas. Access to AHPs, including physiotherapist and dietitians, and the availability of volunteers is reduced, which can make the job of the nurse even harder. Added to that, nurses are leaving behind their friends and families, celebrating and relaxing, in order to go out to work, and that is not easy.

At Nursing Times we salute you and appreciate the hard work and care you deliver 24/7 over the festive season.

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