Night Nurse

Job Description

Title: Night Nurse
Reports to: Night Nursing Manager
Relationships: The Community Palliative Care Clinical Nurse Specialist or Public Health Nurse involved in the patient’s care.
Accountability: Professionally accountable as described in An Bord Altranais Code of Professional Conduct (2000) and Scope of Practice Framework for Nursing/Midwifery (2000), Irish Cancer Society
Hours: On a required and agreed basis.

Role Summary

The Irish Cancer Society offers a free Night Nursing Service to palliative patients in their homes, cared for by their families and friends. The service gives help and support to these carers especially at the advanced stage of the patient’s illness. The Irish Cancer Society Night Nursing Service is always complementary to and should follow instructions given by the community Palliative Care Team or the community Primary Care Team ie GP or PHN.

Main Duties and Responsibilities

  • Participate in the planning, assessment, implementation and evaluation of nursing care to enable the patient to continue to be cared for at home
  • Provide advice and support for the carers and family according to their needs
  • Ensure continuity of patient care by communicating and liaising with medical or nursing colleagues, providing accurate and timely reports of any changes in the condition of the patient
  • Keep main carer/next of kin up to date as to the patients ongoing medical condition
  • Maintain accurate records in order to reduce the risk of errors as per An Bord Altranais Recording Clinical Practice Guidelines
  • Administer medicinal preparations in accordance with An Bord Altranais guidelines and ICS policies and procedures
  • Report any drug errors immediately to the patient’s GP, doctor on call or the doctor attached to the hospice and/or community Palliative Care Team
  • Use evidence based practise to develop and maintain high quality patient care and ensure the continuous improvement of the night nursing service
  • Report verbally any accident or untoward incident during or immediately following the shift, depending on the incident, to the patient’s GP, Community Palliative Care Team or Public Health Nurse and to follow this with written details. (An incident form is included in this pack and should be completed). The Night Nurse should also inform the Irish Cancer Society of the incident
  • To adhere to a ‘no smoking’ on duty policy which must be observed at all times
  • At all times to observe the ‘no sleeping on duty’ policy
  • Follow Medication Management Guidelines as per An Bord Altranais Medication Mangement Guidelines and Irish Cancer Society Policy

General

  • Adhere to An Bord Altranais Code of Professional Conduct and be familiar and up to date with the Scope of Practise advisory documents.
  • Maintain a level of knowledge, skill and competence related to current drugs and/or therapies in the treatment of pain and other symptoms and administer medication according to the instructions given by the GP or doctor attached to the hospice and/or community Palliative Care Team
  • Accept opportunities for continuing education in palliative care nursing provided by the Irish Cancer Society
  • Exercise awareness of professional responsibilities by reading current, relevant literature and by taking up opportunities for personal and professional development
  • To be aware of one’s own responsibilities towards health and safety and in particular relating to moving and handling patients and the use of universal precautions
  • To be aware of personal safety issues in the community. In the rare event that a nurse finds herself/himself in a threatening or intimidating situation they must make a judgement regarding their own safety in relation to remaining in the patient’s home
  • Carry identification in the form of the Irish Cancer Society badge. A uniform is optional, smart casual clothes can also be worn
  • Act as an ambassador of the Irish Cancer Society (Night Nursing Service) at all times with patients, relatives, colleagues and members of the public
  • Adhere to the Data Protection policy on all aspects of data safety and storage.

Confidentiality

  • There must be absolute confidentiality regarding the patient’s diagnosis, prognosis and other information that the nurse may be told or become aware of. This information must only be shared with the health care professionals directly involved in the patient’s management.

Hours of Work – Working Time Policy

  • The Organisation of Working Time Act (1997) limits the maximum working week to 48 hours. Weekly working time can be averaged out over a four month reference period. Staff who have completed a full shift, cannot report back to work until 11 consecutive hours have elapsed.
  • It is the responsibility of each employee to ensure that he/she received adequate sleep during that rest time, prior to going on night duty. Time spent by an employee on ‘standby’ or ‘on call’ is not considered working time.
  • Each employee is required to have a period of 24 hours rest in each seven day period. This period can be averaged out over 14 days i.e. each employee should have a minimum of two days rest a fortnight.

Person Specification

  • Be registered on the general division of An Bord Altranais
  • Have two years experience post qualification
  • Experience working with palliative patients (desirable)
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Ability to work on own initiative
  • Ability to work under the direction of the Community Palliative Care Team
  • Proven ability to display good judgement
  • Full clean driving licence and car essential

This job description applies to those providing nursing care on behalf of the Society and is not exhaustive. It merely acts as a guide and may be amended to meet the changing requirements of this service.

How to Apply

Please send curriculum vitae (quoting An Bord Altranais Pin Number) and cover letter to: HR, Irish Cancer Society, 43-45 Northumberland Road, Dublin 4 Email recruitment@irishcancer.ie Fax: 01 231 0555

For informal enquiries please contact Mary Ferns, Night Nursing Manager on 01-2310524.

The Irish Cancer Society is an equal opportunities employer.