The specialist team cares for and empowers patients to manage their heart failure and assists them in improving their health and wellbeing.

Heart failure It is a progressive disabling condition which affects 1-2% of the population.  It is the most common cause of hospitalisation in people over the age of 65.  It can have a huge impact on the quality of life, psychologically as well as physically.

One service user said: “I receive caring support which is kind and helpful and gives me great confidence with coping with my condition. My nurse listens and deals with all my questions and queries and does everything to set me at ease. I have had difficulty with finding the correct medication that I can tolerate, and this has been helped by my nurse’s considerable patience.”

The heart failure nurse specialists work closely with GPs as well as with hospital consultants to monitor the symptoms of heart failure and manage medication. Emphasis is placed on the education and support of the patient and their carer or family.

The team is made up of seven heart failure nurses, a healthcare assistant and one administrator. The team see patients in their own home or in community-based clinics around the county. They also provide support via telephone, email, text and digital consultations.

Another patient explained: “I look forward to our meetings from the greeting at the door to the conclusion it is very pleasant and relaxing.”

Jennifer Jay, clinical lead of the heart failure team, said: “I am very proud of every single member of the community heart failure team.

“The pandemic has resulted in an increased workload for our team members managing heart failure patients at home, who were either too scared to be admitted to hospital or discharged early due to concern regarding them contracting coronavirus.

“It is rewarding that our patients have recognised our efforts to provide high quality care in such demanding circumstances.”

There is agreement amongst the I Want Great Care reviewers about the way the team approaches their work. This is summed up by one patient who explained: “They are always extremely helpful, informative and show a genuine concern on a personal basis” while another reviewer wrote, “I was put at ease straight away and was treated with great respect. It was conducted in a very professional manner.”

Find out more about the service here.