Susan, a faith community nurse, describes a situation where her intervention has made a difference to a family in her community.
A story from Dora
Dora has been a public health nurse and a practice nurse in her rural community and is now working as a FCN. She knew a family where the husband had dementia, we will call him Fred, and he was being cared for at home by family and caregivers.
Jack and Jill
Jack and Jill are a retired couple in their late 60s. (Names changed) It is the second marriage for both and 3 years ago they moved into an apartment in a lovely retirement village so that they could 'lock up and leave' and explore the country in their campervan and enjoy some cruises. They both have children and grandchildren who are all very supportive of this relationship.
Beatrice is a 84 year old woman who is a well loved cathedral parishioner. She lives alone, has a strong faith and a very supportive family. Beatrice is a friend of mine as well as a Parishioner.
My journey is about Mr F, an 87 year old gentleman, living on his own, who I met soon after I'd commenced as a Faith Community Nurse. One of my parishioners asked me to accompany him to his local GP each month for BP checks and review of his medication.
The parishioner is Korean and speaks and understands limited English and wanted me to explain things slowly afterwards. At the end of the first visit, I told the doctor I was now parish nursing and if he knew of anyone in the area who needed my assistance, I'd be happy to visit and help out where needed. He immediately told me about Mr F, who was in the early stages of dementia. Mr F's only child (a son) lived in Australia and there were few people to keep an eye on him. I said I would visit him. Strangely, the following Sunday morning as I was parking to go into church, Mr F walked past my car. I recognised him because his wife, who I'd known when she had worked at the local medical centre years before, had been in the same rest home as my mother-in-law and Mr F used to visit his wife when we were visiting, so I felt as if I already knew him. I said hello, told him who I was and that I was the new parish nurse and would he like me to visit him some time. He smiled and said that would be nice.
Parish community nursing is active within the Pacific communities
"How wonderful it is, how pleasant, for God's people to live together in harmony. That is where the Lord has promised his blessings...Life that never ends' Psalm 133:1,3
Parish Community Nurses have been employed to work within the Pacific Communities of Auckland within what is known as Healthy Village Action Zones (HVAZ). HVAZ is the concept of building healthy Pacific communities with access to quality health care. HVAZ is about community led development, which is owned by Pacific communities, and looks after the physical, social and spiritual needs of Pacific peoples.