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Today, Thursday December 3rd, marks International Day of People with Disabilities.
The St James’s Hospital Virtual Staff Choir and MISA’s Creative Life have invited everyone to take a moment out from their day to view their performance of U2’s ‘Love is Bigger Than Anything In Its Way.’
From pregnancy through to the child’s third birthday, parents, on average, will meet a healthcare professional at least 25 times. The Nurture Programme focuses on the relationship between healthcare professionals and parents.
Getting a COVID-19 test is never a pleasant experience, especially for young children. But one member of the National Ambulance Service (NAS) swabbing team has been making sure that he can make it as fun for them as possible.
Rising Voices, a dementia friendly choir, in the HSE Odin’s Wood Day Care Centre in Finglas West was started in September 2019. After their first pre Covid performance in February this year the choir moved to a virtual solution which has provided great support for all involved.
The Occupational Therapists identified an activity pack that was being used in The Royal Hospital, Donnybrook to support patients who were isolated as in-patients, and decided to adapt this idea (with permission), to develop a home-based activity pack. With that, Project Postbox was born.
Uptake of the flu jab among staff rose by 24.5% to 58.3% for the 2019-2020 flu season. TJ White, Director of Nursing at the hospital, said the peer vaccinators among the staff were key to the success of the campaign. The hospital used the Staff Wellness Day to promote the benefits of the vaccine and address any concerns that people had surrounding the flu jab. They regularly communicate with the staff with updates about the campaign.
A unique tenancy support service that has been preventing homelessness is an award-winning initiative from mental health services in the Mid-West.
A new initiative has proven a massive boost to the uptake of the flu vaccine among staff in the Dublin Midlands Hospital Group (DMHG).
Paediatric staff in Tallaght have turned their PPE into a reassuring ice-breaker for their young patients – thanks to some fun cartoon visors.
Last year, 68.8 per cent of staff at the south-eastern hospital got their flu jab, a rise of 21.4 per cent from the previous year.
Young Kildare woman Sandra Kelly is the picture of self-confidence. But behind her good looks and bright smile, she bears all the mental scars of life with a stutter.
Getting the flu jab is even more important this year as we desperately need to shield our hospitals and help reduce the burden on our health service. Vaccination of healthcare workers has been shown to reduce flu-related deaths by up to 40%.
When the COVID-19 pandemic struck in early March, former nurse Helen Behan knew that she couldn’t sit back and watch. Instead, she joined the thousands of people who returned to the health service to help cope with the virus. The thing that sets the Co Meath woman apart from her colleagues was the fact that during her stint working in the COVID-19 Assessment Unit in Drogheda, she found out that she had been nominated for a best supporting actress gong at both the British Academy Film and Television Awards (BAFTA) and an Irish Film and Television Awards (IFTA).
Martin Smith, the ‘flu champion’ at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda, was full of praise for the efforts of his colleagues, nearly 92% of whom opted to get the vaccine last winter, earning the hospital a national award.
Fifteen-year-old Glyn O’Connor walked back through the doors of his secondary school in Waterford on September 29th, a few weeks after his classmates. But it was a delayed trip that his family thought he would never get to make just three months earlier.
Deborah is the flu champion for St Anne's House and St Martin’s House in Falcarragh, Co. Donegal where 100% of staff opted to get the vaccine last season / during the 2019/2020 influenza season to protect themselves and others, earning them a national award.
Roisin, a HSE public health nurse, hosts an online breastfeeding group in Dun Laoghaire. The virtual group began several weeks ago when Roisin returned to her post following redeployment to a COVID-related role.
Shauna Strutt volunteered to be a Quit leader to encourage her HSE colleagues to kick the habit with her back in March as part of the 28-day Quit challenge
A project that cut waiting times for patients from up to four years to less than 12 weeks took home the prize in the ‘Improving Patient Care’ category in the recent Health Service Excellence Awards. The Cork University Maternity Hospital (CUMH) Gynaecology Waiting List initiative was designed to tackle the highest gynaecology outpatient waiting list in Ireland in the short term and work towards a sustainable model of service delivery and patient care in the medium term.
Cooking and eating together in an initiative facilitated by the HSE has helped a group of men on Cork’s Northside to promote better mental health and wellbeing. Cork Kerry Community Healthcare Resource Officer for Suicide Prevention Martin Ryan ran 10 weeks of cooking classes late last year with a group of men through the local Northside Community Health Initiative (NICHE). The classes were so successful that the group published a cookbook featuring some of their favourite recipes. The proceeds will fund a further set of classes.
Occupational therapists on the Coolock and Darndale Community Mental Health Teams brought together both service users and team members to form a photography group to tackle isolation and build morale in the midst of COVID-19 restrictions and despite limited resources available. As indoor and outdoor face-to-face groups had and still are discontinued due to increased risks, the occupational therapists decided to go digital in engaging their service users.
As the HSE hit the millionth COVID-19 test on Wednesday, one contact tracer (CT) has given an insight into an average day carrying out the vital work. Caroline Lennon-Nally explained that she had requested a move to the contact tracing team from her role in the National Quality Improvement Team when the pandemic hit back in March. “I recognised the critical importance of CT in protecting the health of the people of Ireland. I am passionate about working with people in order to help and support them and that was my primary motivation for requesting to be involved in this work,” said the contact tracer. Virtual contact tracers (CTs) are people who work outside the standard call centers. In the case of COVID-19, most are likely working from home.
The belief that everyone deserves access to their information was a driving force behind an award-winning project for people with intellectual disabilities. For the past decade, the St John of God (SJOG) Liffey Services team have been working with multimedia to support total communication approaches for people with an intellectual disability. Their resultant ‘Person-centred Plans’ (PCP) has earned them the award for Innovation in Integrated Digital Excellence at the recent HSE Health Service Excellence Awards. The Liffey Services team spent years researching, testing and piloting systems to support accessible PCPs during this time. The project group’s focus was ensuring they created a transparent and accessible person-centred planning system. They co-designed an accessible PCP platform on iplanit with software developers Aspirico thanks to a QIC eHealth grant. “Our aim is not only to put the person first in theory but, through the use of multimedia and assistive technology, to ensure that they have access to their plans and records in real-time,” explained Sarah Gavra Boland, Assistive Technology Co-Ordinator, SJOG Liffey Services.
Residents of a community nursing unit have been empowered to lead their own care in an environment where they can feel at home thanks to an award-winning initiative.
Three HSE Mental Health Service Training Centres across Co Roscommon came to the rescue to modify unsuitable PPE so it could be used in the frontline battle against COVID-19.
The Parent Education Department at University Hospital Galway have re-designed their services to meet the needs of mothers and their families in recent months.
The COVID-19-enforced closure of Day Services for older people has had a major impact on clients, with one in five expressing a feeling of loneliness or isolation as a result. However, new repurposed services, including the provision of Meals on Wheels, telephone calls and laundry service, are having a positive impact on quality of life of the clients with one in two clients availing of new services. The findings are from research commissioned to look at the impact of the closure of Day Services on service users, carers for people with dementia and the service providers.
A new booklet for colleagues recovering from COVID-19 is helping staff of St Mary’s Hospital in the Phoenix Park returning to work and encouraging camaraderie among frontline workers.
Over 6,000 children attended the CHO Dublin North City and County (DNCC) immunisation hub at the National Show Centre in Swords, Co Dublin this July.
Hospital appointments and procedures are now being resumed and to reduce the risk of spread of coronavirus, hospitals have developed new ways of working.
HSE Dublin South, Kildare & West Wicklow & HSE Cork North/South Lee Community Healthcare in conjunction with the Irish Society for Chartered Physiotherapists have produced a “Let’s Get Moving Again” information booklet with eight daily exercises to encourage people to become active again after cocooning during COVID-19’.
The HSE’s Mental Health Engagement and Recovery Team partnered with Mental Health Ireland and community partners to host a successful online event to celebrate and promote family recovery on the UN’s International Day of Families, Friday 15th May
The introduction of a video facility that allows parents of babies in the Neonatal Unit at University Hospital Galway to see regular images and videos of their new arrival has been a huge success.
A virtual visitation platform is providing comfort to parents of babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) of Cork University Maternity Hospital (CUMH) with video messages and regular updates sent to them directly.
Children in Dublin have been able to resume vital speech and language therapy in a fun and interactive new way.
The HSE Naas Staff Choir got their voices behind Pride 2020 with an amazing virtual performance of Lady Gaga’s Born This Way. The staff choir have been continuing to sing together and connect from home during the COVID-19 restrictions and were delighted to get the invitation from LGBT Ireland to support the nationwide Pride 2020 celebrations.
The family of an 82-year-old Dubliner who returned home having survived COVID-19 paid tribute to the staff of Beaumont Hospital who treated him, saying they ‘weren’t just frontline staff, they were lifeline staff’. John Lonergan from Portmarnock tested positive for COVID-19 after becoming very unwell on March 26th and taken to Beaumont Hospital by ambulance. Discharged after five days, his condition declined rapidly and he was readmitted on April 6th.
Staff at Gorey District Hospital have expressed their thanks to the people of Gorey and surrounding community in North Wexford for their support over the last three months.
Pat McCreanor answered Ireland’s call back in March and now heads up the COVID room in the National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC).
The benefits of video technology have been really evident in recent weeks right across the country. The introduction of ‘Attend Anywhere’ a safe, simple video conferencing tool in various settings has allowed health professionals to continue to see patients virtually for a video call consultation during Covid 19. The HSE is in the process of rolling out various video conferencing tools, including Attend Anywhere, nationally across the country. Some 10,000 ‘Attend Anywhere’ video consultations have taken place across the country over recent months. In CHO 1 Attend Anywhere is currently available in Donegal, Sligo, Leitrim, Cavan and Monaghan and services being delivered range from Community Physiotherapy, Respiratory Integrated Care, Diabetes Services, Mental Health Services, Psychology, Audiology to Dietetics. According to Wendy Rutherford, Implementation Lead for Donegal, "It has been a very exciting, challenging and rewarding experience supporting the National Virtual Health Team roll out Attend Anywhere. The gains for service providers and service users are considerable as we are enabling effective communication and care provision through the medium of eHealth whilst under pandemic restrictions.”
Drawings, paintings, cards and letters sent in from local primary and secondary school children helped reduce patient isolation and loneliness among patients at St Columcille’s Hospital in Loughlinstown during COVID-19. The Speech and Language Therapy Department came up with the initiative with the hope that a thoughtful card or letter could lift spirits and offer a connection with children and students in the community.
THE COVID-19 pandemic has seen attendances at Emergency Departments around the country drop significantly but the public are being urged not to ignore injuries that need hospital attention. Injury Units around the country are proving their worth as reliable and safe care providers for patients with minor injuries sustained at home during the Covid-19 pandemic. Greg Ashe, from Co Limerick, was grateful to be able to attend St John’s Injury Unit for treatment when he injured himself at home, and it’s a decision he feels may have accelerated his recovery.
In-patient palliative care patients have possibly felt the COVID-19 restrictions harder than most but therapists in St Brigid’s Hospice in Kildare have gone out of their way to make sure they remain connected to their families. While visiting restrictions were a necessity, patients reported missing family and friends and finding it ‘dreadful’ to not be able to stay connected. Staff too were distressed by not being able to support patients and their family in the usual manner, which is central to the holistic nature of palliative care. Senior Occupational Therapist Dervla Kennedy and Senior Speech and Language Therapist Candice Kelly noted the impact this was having on patients’ health and well-being and set about doing something to make sure that vital social interaction was restarted despite the pandemic. Tablets were kindly purchased by The Friends of St Brigid’s, and video calls and emails were facilitated between patients and their families and friends.
Tallaght Hospital has been providing psychological ‘first aid’ for its staff as the COVID-19 crisis continued to take a toll on frontline health service workers. When the outbreak began to escalate in China in the winter, psychologists in TUH started to research the learnings from the Ebola outbreak and the Sars outbreak as they understood the psychological footprint of COVID-19 would be large. Their psychology team gathered resources to help everyone cope with what was about to happen. The pandemic has had a major impact on everyone but on healthcare staff in particular. They need to be supported to maintain their psychological wellbeing
Niall Horan generously pledged €100,000 specifically to provide mobile devices (tablets) for use by older people and staff in public long term residential care so residents can stay in touch with their families. Niall was inspired to do so when his cousins Patricia and Caroline sent him a photo of them talking on the phone to their granny outside her window and then decided to teach her how to use FaceTime. Seeing the positive impact it’s had on his granny inspired him to do the same for other older people. In this video, Geraldine Aspinall, Assistant Director at St. Ita’s Hospital, Newcastle West, Co. Limerick describes the enormous benefit the donation has meant for staff and residents during the pandemic.
Conquering the Irish coastline virtually via the scenic surroundings of the Sligo countryside is something occupational therapist Lisa McGill never anticipated for May 2020. The Sligo community-based Occupational Therapist, along with physiotherapist Shane Bohan and speech and language therapist Tara Cawley, saw an opportunity to gather a community of colleagues and set a collective challenge to complete a 1707km round trip of Irish coastal towns and raise funds for local charities.
We have seen the power of kindness during the COVID-19 crisis and there has been an outpouring of love and support for our healthcare staff. Connolly Hospital, with the generosity of small businesses transformed an old unused room to a beautiful tranquil space for all staff. The room, aptly renamed 'The Haven' is where staff can retreat from the toil of fighting COVID-19 to a warm, comfortable, peaceful sanctuary.
“We all know how important social distancing is at present. However, for someone with mental health needs and individuals with dementia, our aim is to make this distancing merely a physical one,” said Regina Lafferty, Clinical Nurse Specialist in Dementia. “The truth is that for those who are cocooning, the days can be long and lonely.” In ‘normal’ circumstances mental health service users needs are supported by various community and hospital based services such as Day Care Centres, social groups, Men’s Sheds, community mental health teams and many others. However, during the COVID-19 pandemic many service users and their families are unable to access the community based services. Staff in Mental Health Services for Older Persons in HSE North Dublin were extremely mindful of this and in response developed a programme called ‘Golden Moments’ to provide a structured alternative in supporting individuals with dementia in their homes. And it worked well. ‘Golden Moments’ has been an overwhelming success and service users and family members have let us know by text, emails, voicemail and cards.
Going for a Covid-19 test can be daunting, especially for children, as Speech and Language Therapists in Dublin North City and County noticed when working frontline at the community testing centre at Croke Park. Sinéad Finn, Speech and Language Therapist in Dublin North City and County, explained, “We wanted to help children who were worried when coming for testing and thought a visual story would be useful. We discussed this at our daily debrief and were delighted to be supported and encouraged by Maria Flaherty, our Clinical Lead at the Testing Centre.
A hug or even the sight of a loved one at your bedside can help patients to get through tough times in hospitals. It’s the lack of this close contact that has been hardest on patients and families during the COVID-19 crisis. But UL Hospitals Group has been facilitating virtual hospital visits to help keep families in touch during the public health emergency.
Tallaght University Hospital (TUH) has responded in creative and adaptable ways to the unique challenges presented by COVID-19 to ensure patients and staff still have access to art and music - but in a different and more virtual way. As with all services across the Hospital, COVID-19 has severely impacted the process of delivering the Arts Service in the hospital. Music therapy and art at the bedside services to patients are not possible and ‘Heartbeats - TUH Choir’ rehearsals have been cancelled due to necessary social distancing and infection-control measures. But the work of The National Centre for Arts & Health at TUH has ensured that patients and staff continue to have the health and wellbeing benefits that art and music bring.
April 17th should have been the most special day of her life but one nurse spent the day wearing scrubs instead of her wedding dress as she battled Covid-19 on the frontline. A Clinical Nurse Manager in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Aisling McGarrell was forced to cancel her wedding plans after the crisis hit last month. But rather than taking off what was supposed to be her wedding day, she opted to join her colleagues on a 12-hour shift.
Mary Walshe was in Thailand in January when she first heard of Coronavirus. She never anticipated that within three months she would be back in Ireland, setting up country’s first self isolation facility in Citywest – the well known Dublin hotel and conference facility Having retired early (from position of Chief Officer Dublin North) on April 1st last year, Mary did so “in order to spend some quality time with family and to travel because that’s one of my loves. I hadn’t been in a position to do it for a while so when I set off, I ended up spending most of last year travelling.
The commitment, energy, creativity of those working in healthcare settings in addressing the COVID 19 challenge right across the country continues to be on display over the past week with ample illustrations visible through social media. From virtual visits for parents who can now see and observe their babies in the neonatal unit in CUH, to the drive through warfarin clinic in Tallaght University Hospital to the success story of Paddy Joe Lynch who at 82 wanted to share his story of having been discharged from Sligo University Hospital after being treated for COVID 19, these tweets give a snapshot of a committed, caring workforce.
Last week, we introduced our three staff Quit Leaders – Shauna Strutt, Jennifer Curtis and Martha Clarke who are taking part in the 28-day no smoking challenge. As we head into the second week of the challenge for our Quit Leaders, we check in with them to see how they are getting on.
The sound of singing and laughter has been heard ringing through one Leitrim day hospital as many of its elderly patients got to showcase their talents through the Music in Mind Initiative. Music in Mind is a collaboration between the National Concert Hall and Mental Health Ireland.
Giving up the cigarettes can be tough but two HSE staff members have decided that they aren’t just going to kick the habit – they are also going to help others to do the same. Martha Clark and Shauna Strutt have volunteered to become staff Quit leaders, providing peer support and encouragement to colleagues and service users who have also decided to give up smoking once and for all
A transitional care unit for the elderly has been leading the way in medication information, ensuring all patients are discharged with a full list of their medicines and their uses. Staff in the Cottage Hospital in Drogheda introduced the medication reconciliation checklist in 2018 in response to the World Health Organization Global Patient Safety Challenge, Medication Without Harm, and the HSE’s Know Check Ask campaign.
Regional Hospital Mullingar (RHM) has become one of the first hospitals in Ireland to have a specially-designed Sensory Room for children with autism. The aim of the new Sensory Room is to improve the experience for patients attending the ED with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Sensory Processing Disorders. It will also help medical professionals in treating these patients.
Having a loved one spend time in hospital can be extremely difficult but two projects are making life a little easier for patients and their family members in the west. In University Hospital Galway (UHG), Croí, the heart and stroke charity, recently funded the furnishing and redesign of a new family room for the Coronary Care Unit, while Sligo University Hospital (SUH) was delighted to introduce 21 new buddy beds to the Paediatric Department.
On 5 January 2019, the Woodlands Unit opened its doors to patients. An innovative residential service for older patients who no longer require acute care but for whom a return home or to a non-acute setting may take some time to arrange. A year on, some of the team at Connolly Hospital reflect on the task of getting the unit opened on time. Woodlands Unit was developed to address the challenge of ensuring older patients are cared for in the most appropriate health care setting. The service demonstrates Sláintecare in action, helping us to deliver the right care in the right place at the right time
The death of their beloved daughter prompted one Co Kerry family to ensure that life was made a little easier for other sick children. Tony and Mary Heffernan set up the Saoirse Foundation, named after their daughter who sadly lost her life in 2011 at the family home at the tender age of five. Saoirse had the rare and always fatal neurological condition, Batten Disease. The foundation owns and operates BUMBLEance, the world’s first fully interactive Children’s Ambulance Service. It launched its latest vehicle at the Children’s Hospital Ireland’s (CHI) new paediatric Urgent Care Centre at Connolly Hospital, Dublin.
Limerick Dementia Social Club recently celebrated its first birthday, having opened its doors in November 2018 to people with dementia and their carers from across the county. Held on the first Wednesday of every month, the club aims to support people to live well with dementia by providing a dementia-friendly space where people socialise, enjoy refreshments, share information and participate in activities.
Hospital staff had to walk in the shoes of some of their patients recently when they took part in a one-day challenge, following a strict renal diet for 24 hours. The 24-hour renal diet challenge was the brainchild of Eileen Duff, Renal Dietician in Cork University Hospital.
Tralee has opened its arms wide for its citizens and visitors living with dementia, becoming an official dementia-friendly town. A group was formed in the Kerry town to promote awareness of dementia and to support businesses in their interactions with people with dementia and memory deficits. The project goes hand in hand with the aims of the Age Friendly Strategy for the county.
They come from all walks of life, young and old and from many different communities around Kerry but together they all share a common bond in that they are all stroke survivors. With the wonderful help of the Stroke Day Service, they are getting their lives back together one step at a time. The Stroke Day Service at Baile Mhuire has been ongoing for over a year now providing nursing and physiotherapy support to people recovering from a stroke. This one day a week service delivers a 10-week programme to support people after a stroke.
A unique group art felting project has been unveiled at an acute inpatient ward for older adults in St James’ Hospital. Patients, family members and staff at the Connolly Norman Unit (CNU) spent a number of months working on the project, which was unveiled by Michael Lyster at a lovely ceremony on the ward. The project was part of a wider initiative to make the ward more comfortable for the patients.
Two years after the launch of the HSE Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Model, women across the country have spoken about the transformative effects the perinatal mental health services have had on their pregnancies and beyond. Perinatal mental health disorders are those which complicate pregnancy and the first postnatal year. They include both new-onset and relapse or reoccurrence of pre-existing disorders. Their unique aspect is their potential to affect the relationship between mother, child, and family unit. In developing the model of care the HSE were very much focused on the needs of women, infants and their families.
A drone has begun delivering life-saving diabetes care to the remote Aran Islands. Professor Derek O’Keeffe, Consultant Endocrinologist at Galway University Hospitals and Professor of Medical Device Technology at NUI Galway, was the project lead for the world’s first autonomous beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS), vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) drone delivery of diabetes prescription medications (insulin, glucagon) and collection of a patient blood sample between Connemara Airport and Inis Mór, Aran Islands.
There’s nothing like the company of children to keep you young. It was with that in mind that the Blossom Together program began to take roots in a community hospital in Co Leitrim. The intergenerational project came about following observations of the joy that visiting children brought to the residents, many suffering with dementia.
Autistic patients attending Tallaght University Hospital (TUH) will now benefit from improved accommodation of their specific needs, a more knowledgeable workforce and a calmer hospital experience. It is all thanks to a new video produced to help healthcare professionals interacting with autistic children and adults in an acute hospital setting.
Helen Twomey has cerebral palsy and has severe mobility issues. But now she has a new best friend who has changed all that – Alexa!
Paul Reid, CEO and the HSE Executive Management Team reflect on the commitment and dedication of our staff and wish everyone in every part of the country and service a Happy and Peaceful Christmas
Staff in Connolly Hospital Blanchardstown are providing a welcoming, caring and innovative residential service for older patients awaiting full discharge from the hospital
From the humble beginnings of the creation of a coffee shop, staff, residents and the broader community are transforming Ennistymon Community Nursing Unit into a community hub featuring a Memory Lane that houses a coffee shop, vintage boutique shop, Post Office, Town Hall Cinema, Hair and Nail Bar, Men’s Shed and plant nursery. They have also involved local primary school children in an intergenerational project that allows the children to “buddy-up” with residents.
HSE staff have been making a huge difference into the lives of Co Mayo families for 17 years, bringing a bit of Christmas magic to many homes in need. Back in 2002, recognising the hardship that some people were facing in the local area, staff in Mayo decided that they would do something to help, and so the Bronntanas project was born. The main goal of the scheme is to support parents who are experiencing difficulties at Christmas by providing a gift for them to give their children on Christmas morning. Its success can be seen from the fact that gifts were given to over 450 children in the county last year.
A determined and dedicated team of midwives and their colleagues in Cork University Maternity Hospital (CUMH) have transformed the birthing suite rooms and the experiences of the expectant mums using them.
In the year that she fulfilled her own swimming dream, a Cork Public Health Nurse has urged carers to look after their own health and keep active.
An area of waste ground at the rear of a day centre for people with severe mental health issues has been transformed into a beautiful garden – and all with the help of the service users themselves. The new garden at Abbeyview Day Centre in Castledermot, Co Kildare was officially unveiled recently to the delight of everyone involved.
Mayo has developed the country’s first online information resource for young people whose parents experience mental health distress. The WITH project (Wellbeing In The Home), a young person’s guide to parental mental health, was launched in Castlebar recently. It is a collaborative project between Mayo Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), Community Healthcare West; Mindspace Mayo; young people representing Mindspace and Comhairle na nÓg and young people who have used the CAMHS service.
The Home First Team is a specialist team supporting patients over the age of 75 who are treated in the Emergency Department and the Acute Medical Assessment Unit in the hospital.
Cancer is not just a physical disease which requires medical treatment but also has a significant psychological impact on both the patient and the family. Over the past year, Ireland has become one of the first countries internationally to appoint a Clinical Lead in Psycho-Oncology. Dr Helen Greally was appointed into this unique role last December and is now working to develop psychological support services nationally for cancer patients and their families.
University Maternity Hospital Limerick’s (UMHL) Early Transfer Home Service is designed for well mothers who have a healthy full term baby, who live within a defined catchment area and who want to return home early to receive postnatal care at home with the community midwifery team. Beautiful Cadence, daughter of Kelly and partner Alan Fitzgerald, born on October 10th, was the first baby home as part of this new service.
Patients of the Pain Clinic in Sligo University Hospital (SUH) can speak with their doctor from the comfort of their own home. The new ‘Attend Anywhere’ Pain Clinic allows patients and doctors at the hospital to connect online using a secure platform to discuss their condition just as if they were attending the hospital for their appointment.
Paediatric OT Geraldine Shiels found her experience volunteering in Colombia humbling. Geraldine worked with children in an orphanage, with teens and with older women and came away enriched.
A nurse-led initiative has been helping to eliminate lengthy delays for many patients waiting on medical assessment and treatment at the Acute Medical Assessment Unit (AMAU) in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda.
Dementia can take away so much from a person but a new initiative at a community care home in Galway has given their residents back their own ‘life story’. Life Story books were created for each person with dementia living in the Creagh Suite in St Brigid’s Hospital, Ballinasloe, to discover more about them, their lives, likes and dislikes, relationships and interests. It has promoted greater empathy and understanding between them and the staff that care for them.
The real prize for the joint winner of the recent HSE staff steps challenge was simply being able to take part, two years after a diagnosis of incurable cancer. Mary Holden, Communications Manager at the Coombe Women & Infants University Hospital in Dublin, said the Steps to Health Challenge gave her a reason to get back to exercise and boost her health at the same time.
A Roscommon based knitting group has been helping to improve the lives of clients of mental health services and has been very successful in its inclusive approach and its fund raising efforts.
Music Therapist Catherine Sweeney Brown has taken up a one year residence in University Hospital Waterford with her audience and benefactors the babies in the Neonatal and Special Care Baby Unit.
Bernie White, Supervisor in the Coombe Hospital, is one of Ireland’s Master Athletes. Her impressive success is even more impressive as she has overcome significant injury and breast cancer in achieving her victories
A simple telephone service has been helping keep patients with lung disease out of hospital and able to manage their symptoms at home. The initiative involving nurse specialists creates a virtual clinic that means less trips to hospital for patients and a more efficient way of managing their conditions
Midwives, doctors, physios, dieticians and new parents ( joined by their babies) recently came together for the first ever Whose Shoes event at University Hospital Galway (UHG). Its aim is to help improve women’s experience of maternity care by building on local relationships and enhancing existing relationships within the services.
Baby Senan Fraser, born at 25 weeks got his first vaccinations in Rotunda where staff have an 80% uptake rate – double protection for a premature baby
North West Home Sharing Programme brings both respite and friendship – hosts, guests and families speak of the bond of friendship that forms when families open their homes to individuals with disabilities, providing respite but also enriching the lives of the hosts and their families
Crumlin Hospital teamed up with Disney Ireland and BBDO Dublin to use Toy Story and other Disney characters to de-traumatise the X-ray process. They placed X-ray images of the characters on the walls of the hospital’s department and it has been a great success with the children
Golden Retriever Cody is the latest recruit to Portiuncula University Hospital, bringing pet therapy to patients and cheering both staff and patients
Galway based paramedic Eamonn Baxter, having saved the life of baby Jonah Murphy who went into cardiac arrest at seven weeks, returned, four years later, to present him with a very special Six Star Marathon Medal after he completed the unique challenge of six marathons
The team in St Brendan’s Care Home, Loughrea, Co Galway trial an unusual technological support for people with dementia. Mario the Robot was introduced as a guest and proved a positive addition, entertaining, supporting and interacting with clients
Just weeks after his wife Mairead encouraged Paul to do a CPR class, he ended up using those skills to save her life
Mum Amanda outlines how her son Charlie will be the amongst the first boys to receive the HPV Vaccine in September
A surprise diagnosis and a feeling of being overwhelmed led to two Kildare mums penning a wonderful new book to help families of children born with Cystic Fibrosis.
HSE primary care dental staff now have access to fully digitised dental treatment records for all of their patients following the completion of a nationwide rollout of the HSE National Dental Record and Information System. The system is now live in 221 locations in 26 counties.
Distractions from visitors and medical staff during meals can have a massive effect on a patient’s nutrition during a hospital stay. The goal of a new initiative in Sligo University Hospital is to review ward environment during mealtimes.
Pat has only one regret when she looks around her sister Sheila’s beautiful home – that her move there didn’t happen sooner. Sheila has Down Syndrome and recently moved to Killinthomas Lodge following a diagnosis of dementia.
A unique nursing role in the Beaumont Hospital is tackling the chronic problem of alcohol related hospital admissions.
Play is more than playgrounds and it is not just for young children. An urban regeneration project in Tralee is making that their mantra as they rethink the idea of play and its role in developing social wellbeing.
A free, simple home bowel screening test saved the life of Co Cork father-of-four Bernard Wallace and he is now urging people to take part in the programme. April is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month.
As a paramedic Jason McKenna is used to being a lifesaver but he’s also the recipient of a lifesaving kidney.
One of the main attractions of becoming a public health nurse for Michael Power was the opportunity to look after patients in their own homes and communities.
An innovative parenting programme has been helping parents and children create calmer and happier households across the Midlands for nearly a decade.
Dental services and public health nurses in Waterford are working together to reduce dental extractions for children in their care.
Watch the video from the WellComm – Well Communities Connect event in Cork, held in January 2019.
The Regional Hospital Mullingar has introduced a Frailty Intervention Team (MFIT) for patients aged over 75 years attending their Emergency Department. The project recently won the Popular vote category at the Health Service Excellence awards. They were nominated in the Improving Patient Experience category.
Watch our video from the launch of the HSE Intercultural Strategy
Access to Psychology Services Ireland (APSI) provides services in Co Roscommon. They were the recipients of a Health Service Excellence awards recently in the category ‘Championing Mental Health’.
Health inclusion team Safetynet Primary Care is helping to remove barriers to care for people who are homeless.
Ard Chúram Day Care Centre provides a lifeline for older people in North Kerry
When well-known journalist Philip Nolan was first told he had Type 2 diabetes, his biggest fear was going blind.
The most challenging issue for Tom Hope after he was diagnosed with prostate cancer was accepting that he had the disease.
“From the general manager to the staff in the cafeteria, we must get the flu vaccine. We come into contact with so many people – high-risk people, pregnant women and old people. They need us to be on our best game”
The unique Support Volunteers Initiative in Carlow and Kilkenny is giving people with mental health difficulties much-needed support during their visits to the local Emergency Department.
Gay and bisexual men can have a ‘pint and a prick’ on their nights out thanks to a programme that has been breaking down barriers to HIV testing in cities across Ireland for over two years.
"It was like I had won the Lotto.” They are not the words you expect someone to use to describe their heart attack but, for 65-year-old Donegal man Sean Culleton, luck was definitely on his side when he collapsed on the golf course two years ago.
Footballer Cathal Joyce was 25 and in the shape of his life. He was getting ready to line out for Athlone in a club championship semi-final when he suffered a cardiac arrest.
An ICU nurse had to use all her 20 years of experience when she awoke in the early hours of the morning to her husband having a cardiac arrest in the bed next to her. Following the traumatic experience that saw Geraldine Bolger perform CPR for 30 minutes, she is urging people to learn the technique.
Rosaleen, her husband and four children recently made the trip to Baldonnell on the invitation of the Air Corps who airlifted her to hospital two years ago.
In October 2016, Michelle Herbert suffered a cardiac arrest while playing in the Limerick junior county camogie final.
Last week, groups gathered around the country to celebrate National Breastfeeding Week. We caught up with one group in Malahide
Nursing home residents feel the wind in their hair thanks to exciting new project
The recent wedding of one Dublin couple was made extra special by the fact that the mother of the bride was also the celebrant.
As HSE teams begin visiting schools for this year's HPV vaccination campaign, Laura Brennan gave a moving speech at a HSE media event in Dublin.
As we come to the end of Palliative Care Week, nurse Jacqueline Kells talks about the new Palliative Care Needs Assessment (PCNA) pocket guide and her role as a Palliative Care Nurse
News this week that carers in receipt of carers allowance or benefit are entitled to a free GP visit card means that there is one less worry for Moira and her family.
Bridget Sugrue lost her daughter to a drugs overdose 14 years ago, said the impact of naloxone for families struggling to deal with drug addiction cannot be overstated.
The new birthing pool has already become a wonderful addition to the facilities at Maternity Hospital Limerick, with local mums praising the sense of calm and empowerment they felt during their labours.
Learning about his diabetes has helped to empower one man to change his lifestyle and enjoy a good quality of life despite the diagnosis.
A diagnosis of dementia can often leave a person and their family feeling completely alone and isolated. But a recent series of community awareness talks took place in Kilkenny and Carlow to help people come to terms with the challenges ahead of them and inform them on the many supports available to them.
An exciting year begins for Kerry-born Hannah Kelliher as she takes up the Aspire Advanced Resuscitation Fellowship in the Mater Hospital this week.
Tipperary got a chance to see things through the eyes of drivers with disabilities.The Back in 5 campaign aims to draw attention to the misuse of accessible parking bays.
An exhibition of artwork at University Hospital Waterford (UHW) will make it ‘a better place for everyone and help to lift people’s spirits’.
A unique new children’s book is helping youngsters cope with finding out that a relative or loved one has dementia.
William Russell was overwhelmed when he was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes until he completed an education and self-management course and took control of his condition.
Kitty Kelly has been providing a smile and a kind word to staff and patients of St Camillus’ Community Hospital in Limerick for 43 years and insists that she could not have found a happier place to work.
An aidhm atá ag an scéim scoláireachta ar leith seo ná cainteoirí Gaeilge a mhealladh i dtreo na seirbhíse sláinte chun cabhrú le seachadadh seirbhísí i nGaeilge.
Nurse led service is improving waiting times for oncology and haematology patients. .
Midwife Sandra Sherwin was on a mission to make pregnancy yoga classes available to women.
To mark International Women’s Day 2018, we speak to two women in leadership positions in the HSE - Anne O’Connor, National Director for Community Operations, and Mary Walshe, Chief Officer, Community Health Organisation Dublin North City and County
Five years ago, Martin Quinn suffered a stroke on live radio, an event which he will forever associate with Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai, credited with inspiring his amazing recovery.
The Serum Eye Drop Programme in University Hospital Galway prepares eye-drops using patients own blood, to relieve conditions such as severe dry-eye to burns and ulcers in the eye. The hospital is the only licensed producer of serum eye-drops in the country. The project won the ‘Team Project’ and ‘People’s Choice’ awards at last year’s Health Service Excellence Awards. #OurHealthService
Michael Power is a student representative of the National Adult Literacy Agency (NALA). He tells us about his personal experience of the navigating our health service with literacy difficulties.
People who have experienced mental health issues and are in recovery themselves have been offering support to service users across the country in a new approach by the HSE Mental Health Division.
When patients admitted to St. Vincent’s University Hospital for management of the acute diabetic foot increased by 52%, staff established a project that resulted in fewer hospital admissions and fewer amputations.
When Edward Humphrey went from smoking 20 cigarettes a day to 60, he knew his habit was out of control and resolved to quit.
The Temple Street Children's Hospital Influenza Vaccination Campaign 2016/2017 encouraged the uptake of the vaccine among staff.
The annual Stone Award recognises a nurse who has made a consistently great contribution in the field of dermatology nursing. It has recently been awarded to Limerick nurse, Sheila Ryan.
The Food First project in St Mary’s Hospital, Phoenix Park, Dublin, aims to reduce patients reliance on oral nutritional supplements by improving mealtime practices. The project won the ‘Improving Patient Experience’ award at the 2017 Health Service Excellence Awards.
Ellie Noone was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes when she was four years old. With the support of her team in University Hospital Limerick, Ellie (7) and her family, refuse to let her condition get in the way of a full and active life.
In response to a dramatic increase in STI's among men who have sex with men in 2016, the Gay Men's Health Service set up a new walk in clinic. The service was nominated for a Health Service Excellence Award last year. Watch the video here.
Three transition year students from Kinsale, Co. Cork, inspired by the ‘Pearl of Wisdom’ campaign, have carried out research on women’s knowledge of cervical screening and what influences then to attend. They are at the BT Young Scientists Exhibition this weekend in the RDS, Dublin.
When Kate gave up smoking, she did it for her health. She didn’t realise it would eventually spark a successful Ireland business
Audrey Burkley, a School Vaccination PHN with North Lee Community Services, Cork, achieved her life goal when she swam the English Channel this summer.
10 years ago, Bernie Tierney got chatting to some of the hospitals older patients as Christmas approached and she had an idea.
The project supports families in Mayo, working with Santa to provide a gift on Christmas morning. The project won the HR Special Award at the Health Service Excellence Award.
St Raphael’s in Youghal has been a home for people with intellectual disabilities since the 1990’s. As part of the HSE’s Transforming Lives strategy, residents have now moved to houses in the local community, living ordinary lives in ordinary places.
A partnership by the HSE and ALONE Ireland has emerged overall winner at the Health Service Excellence Awards. The volunteer befriending and support service has, so far, supported 489 older people in Ireland.
An amazing ‘flash mob’ performance by the newly formed HSE Tullamore Staff Choir has gone viral, being viewed over a million times
The Fenton quads dropped into Southill Health Centre, Limerick recently to help staff turn on their Christmas lights. The quads have been supported by Public Health Nurse Eimear Laffan since their birth in October 2016
Meet some of the staff and patients of the recently renovated facility
A project in Monaghan aims to build positive mental health in children through art and drama
Dr Cliona Ní Cheallaigh, along with nurse Ann Marie Lawlee, has just completed an Inclusion Health pilot project that successfully reduced the rates of admission, re-admission and length-of-stay of homeless patients at St James’s Hospital in Dublin.
The residents and staff of St John’s Hospital, Sligo thank outstanding volunteer Eileen Higgins.
Meet Maureen and Paddy – the faces of the new Dementia, Understand Together TV Ads.
Seamus Woods is a Project Manager with 25 years’ experience. He talks us through this current role with the HSE Programme for Health Service Improvement (PHSI)
Hundreds of health service staff last week took part in ‘Restart a Heart’ training to raise awareness about out-of-hospital cardiac arrest and improve public knowledge about resuscitation and CPR.
At age 61, Stephen Lynch was given a choice between giving up smoking or having his leg amputated. 14 years later he's smoke free and enjoying life with his family.
Reusable medical equipment from Ireland helps improve healthcare and training.
The health and wellbeing benefits of choral singing
Drug and Alcohol Helpline Manager, Aileen Dooley, shares a typical day at work on the helpline.
HSE launched the annual Flu vaccine campaign, aimed at encouraging healthcare workers and at-risk groups to get vaccinated against seasonal influenza.
Every breastfeed makes a difference: encouraging mothers to start breastfeeding.
Two nurses from University Hospital Waterford (UHW) received a prestigious international Award for Excellence in Cardiovascular Care 2017
National Haemophilia Chief shares her story with Ryan Tubridy on RTE Radio.
Voices of support: Dublin group steps into the limelight.
Paediatric Department in University Hospital Limerick grateful for technology donation from University of Limerick Medical Society.
Stephen shows that while diabetes is a lifelong condition that needs intensive management, young people with type 1 diabetes can still go on and achieve their goals whether in education, in sport or in life in general.
Leitrim native Eilis Hession has been recognised for her outstanding patient care in the European Kate Granger Awards 2017.
Yvonne O’Hagan was smoking since she was 17 years old and never thought she’d succeed at quitting.
When Janet Doyle went into anaphylactic shock at home in Co. Laois, her daughter Sophie, 7, came to the rescue with the help of the National Ambulance Service
A 46-year-old father of three who had a heart attack while in the swimming pool at the University of Limerick has raised thousands of euro for defibrillators.
Dolores was diagnosed with ovarian cancer after being admitted to hospital for treatment for another condition almost seven years ago.
Enhancing commitment to creating an inclusive workplace,welcoming and supportive of employees.
Beginning a journey to recovery, with or without mental health difficulties, is possible for everyone, and the first step in that process is often as simple as telling someone what’s going on.
The new home of specialist dermatological services at University Hospital Limerick provides new treatments, added capacity and a much improved environment for patients with skin conditions and cancers.
International Day of the Midwife is celebrated globally every year on the 5th May to highlight millions of women and newborns around the world are cared for by skilled midwives
An information booklet for General Practitioners (GPs) working with transgender people in the South East has been launched by the HSE.
Patients who take part in trials make a profound community contribution. What they do is really important.
Part of the Living Well with Dementia pilot project - “See the Person, not their Dementia”.
There are now more people who have quit smoking than smokers in Ireland and Amanda White, who kicked the habit more than a year ago, says it's the best thing she ever did.
The convent in Ballyshannon has been transformed into the area’s new primary care centre.
Seven students recently graduated from Blue Teapot’s programme specifically for adults with intellectual disabilities
Patients now have an electronic record instead of a paper record, which will enhance patient care
Her success marks an important milestone for cardiology and nursing services nationally and in Tallaght Hospital
Fiona Boyle, Smoking Cessation Advisor, caught up with Jimmy Kavanagh, as he celebrated 10 years since he quit smoking.
Introducing @hselive a new multi-channel information service to answer question and be a guide to the Irish Health Service
Thanks to an insulin pump, a family of three children are now able to lead normal lives
€5.5 million investment in new extension and refurbished Emergency Department in Tallaght to reduce double-backing and increase efficiency.
Survey highlights patient’s gratitude to the staff working in Injury Units across the country.
A dental nurse has branched out into the world of medical tattooing, transforming the lives of many of her patients.
Dementia Understand Together, a new campaign to increase awareness of dementia
By the end of 2021, all women aged 50-69 will be invited for free routine mammograms