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Tool launched to help nurses support carers

A new online tool has been launched help community nurses more fully support carers. 

The free resource, developed with funding from the Department of Health, is available on the Queen's Nursing Institute (QNI) website.

The resource is divided into seven parts: 

 - Supporting Carers.

 - Assessment of Carers. 

 - Signposting Carers.

 - Mental Health, Learning Disability and Dementia.

 - End of Life Care.

 - Professional Roles.

 - Personal and Professional Development. 

Each module contains a quiz and self-assessment exercise. There are also nine short new films, that tell the real stories and challenges of carers.

Crystal Oldman, the QNI's chief executive said: "Carers form a vital part of the support system that allows people to live at home in safety and comfort and avoid unnecessary hospital admissions. Very often carers need the support that community nurses can provide. 

"Through sharing advice and experience, nurses can make a carer's role easier and a patient's experience significantly better. This helps reduce pressure on health and social care services. This new resource will help nurses to boost the capacity of carers in a structured way."

Wendy Nicholson, professional officer of School and Community Nursing at the Department of Health said: "Over the last year we have been working with QNI, community nurses and carers organisations to raise the profile of the health and wellbeing of adult carers. 

"This exciting resource developed by the QNI is underpinned by evidence and developed with practitioners and educators. Clearly it will help community nurses to recognise the needs of carers and be better equipped to signpost for local support."