Covid 19 - Our Response

How we’re adapting our work in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

With over 22 million confirmed cases worldwide, the COVID-19 pandemic is a global health crisis affecting all our programmes, and all the hospitals in which we work. The patients we serve are now faced with multiple challenges – from the risk of contracting the virus itself and its impact on overstretched health services, to the knock-on repercussions from containment measures on health, education and livelihoods systems.

We are adapting our work to respond to these new challenges – both now and in the longer-term – while ensuring that we continue to work towards our vision of a support network for all those involved directly or indirectly in advanced nurse and midwife practice.

Click on any image below to read that individuals Covid response. 

Ms. Christine McDermott
Ms. Karen Brennan
Ms. Deirdre Gleeseon
Ms. Jennifer Hewson
Mr. Aidan Fallon
Ms. Audrey Butler
Ms. Cathleen Moran
Ms. Trisha McKeown
Ms. Margaret Mallen
Ms. Charlotte Ryan
Ms. Jenny Lynch
Ms. Niamh Kiely
Mr. Robert McConkey
Ms. Orla Loftus Moran
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Christine Mc Dermott. RANP Neonatology, The Rotunda Hospital Chair, IAANMP.

The COVID 19 Crisis has affected healthcare delivery across all settings including Maternity Services. Visiting restrictions have been particularly burdensome for everyone especially for parents of premature and ill new born infants with very limited access the NICU. Technology has been our friend and has enabled us to send them videos and photos of their infants when they cannot be there. Discharge preparation is now online for parents to access, staff education following suit and zoom our new best friend. Communication has never been more vital as we adapt to this new reality.

Karen Brennan. RANP Emergency. South Tipperary General Hospital. IAANMP Vice-chairperson.

This Pandemic is like nothing any of us have experienced in our working lives. Covid 19 is a test of our resilience and our humanity. The optics have changed but the essence of Advanced Nurse / Midwifery Practice has not altered. We remain front and center as we adapt and respond to facilitate patient access to front line care. The health care issues we have been advocating for many years have now become top priority. We will continue to make bold moves as together we step up to the plate and fight this pandemic for the Irish people.

Deirdre Gleeson. Emergency RANP. University of Limerick Hospitals Group. IAANMP Secretary.

“There are no great people in this world, only great challenges which ordinary people rise to meet” William Fredrick Halsey. In response to the Covid19 Crisis and in preparation for surge capacity management within the ED , the Emergency RANP Team in ULHG have relocated and are providing full ANP cover throughout the three Injury Units within the Emergency Care Network. This allows for effective streaming of injuries and conditions suitable to be managed by ANPs away from the ED.This has allowed me to continue to offer high quality, safe and efficient care for this cohort of Patients in an environment that instills confidence and encourages attendance for treatment.
Jennifer Hewson. RANP Gastroenterology IAANMP Treasurer.

All routine endoscopy services have come to a halt due to Covid 19. As a result I spoke to my DON with a desire help and support staff. She identified a deficit which included staff support with PPE and education as there is no onsite IP&C. This has been a very positive experience for me and a reminder of the work involved with care of patients and a true appreciation for all disciplines of staff.

Aidan Fallon. RANP Emergency. Portincula University Hospital. Galway.

In response to the current Covid 19 crisis, Portiuncula University Hospital has transformed its medical assessment unit into a Covid ED for the assessment of people presenting with covid type symptoms. It has a triage room, 4 individual patient rooms as well as its own resus room. As an ANP in Emergency I still work in the main ED but will see patients in the Covid ED as required. Covid 19 has had a big impact on the numbers of people attending the Emergency Department. While this has led to a calmer working environment it is a concern that people are slow to seek medical attention with some of my patients presenting a number of days after their injury. During these uncertain times it is important that we not only take care of our patients but also of each other and that we all stay safe.

Ms. Audrey Butler. Registered Advanced Nurse Practitioner [Orthopaedics]

Audrey Butler (MHSc (Advanced Practice), RGN, BSN, RNP, HDip Ortho) has worked in the Dept of Trauma Orthopaedics in UHL for 15 years.Prior to this she worked as a Staff Nurse on the Orthopaedic Trauma Ward and was then appointed Clinical Nurse Specialist in 2007, a post she filled for nine years.

Audrey has enhanced her academic and professional development through a vast amount of further education. Her continued professional development was also enhanced through attendances at many orthopaedic nursing courses and conferences. This also gave her opportunity to present audit and research projects undertaken as part of her role.

Audrey completed her Masters in Advanced Specialist Practice in NUIG in 2014 and is a Registered Nurse Prescriber of Medications and Ionising Radiation.

She was appointed Candidate Advanced Nurse Practitioner in Orthopaedics in March 2016 and received accreditation from NMBI in Feb 2017 as a Registered Advanced Nurse Practitioner Orthopaedics, the 1st RANP post nationally within this speciality. Audrey Is an Adjunct Lecturer in the School of Nursing and Midwifery NUIG and is passionate about improving the patient experience of out-patient fracture care at UHL in collaboration with her Consultant colleagues.

Cathleen Moran. Advanced Nurse Practitioner, Acute Medicine, AMU University Hospital Galway.

In response to COVID 19 the AMU in UHG has become “the new medical ED“ for the non Covid medical stream. Initially in preparation for this, the Advanced Nurse Practitioners in AMU, UHG, together with ICAPSS, facilitated clinical simulation training for AMU staff. The ANPs have also changed practice to work across 7 days to support the AMU team. Along with the assessment, treatment and diagnosis of acute ambulatory care patients presenting to AMU, the ANPs have developed virtual clinics to provide an outreach to patients and reduce physical presentations to AMU.

Trisha McKeown. RANP Emergency, Injuries Unit, Nenagh Hospital.

These unprecedented times have challenged us to adapt how we deliver care to our patients. In the ULHG the ED RANP’s have been redeployed to the 3 Injuries Units. We now have a combined rota between the 3 units, providing cross cover as required, to ensure an RANP service on all 3 sites 7 day a week.

Margaret Mallen. RANP Emergency. Monaghan General Hospital.

Covid 19 has altered the way we work. This inspired us all to look at our practices both as individuals and as teams. As advanced nurse practitioners we are often the most senior members of the team with experience in different disciplines. Patients presenting with Covid 19 were nursed in single rooms, any equipment in the room not used would have to be discarded after the patient left ED. We established packs for all common procedures carried out and developed single use packs for cannulation including phlebotomy, sepsis, oxygenation, BIPAP, and ventilation.
Charlotte Ryan. RANP Medical Oncology, Cancer Services, UHL.

Cancer Services in the University Hospital Limerick has remained fully functional during the Covid-19 pandemic. In view of the health and safety of my patients and to minimize the risk locally of community transmission, I added clinics via telephone consultations to my service for my patients who are on surveillance. It is a fantastic service that is available through the hard work and dedication from the Oncology Team in Cancer Services.

Jenny Lynch. Acute Medicine ANP, Cork University Hospital.

As a registered ANP in Acute Medicine I am actively involved in the management of the ambulatory COVID-19 assessment pathway in CUH. As part of the Acute Medicine team we relocated to the outpatients department where we assisted in establishing a COVID-19 Assessment Unit to provide care to patients presenting to ED triage with symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 in an isolation environment. Over the past few months we have extended our working week to 7 days where we as part of the acute medical team are assessing, diagnosing and treating patients on this ambulatory pathway. Whilst this has been challenging we can see how the Acute Medicine ANP role has made a significant contribution to patient care during this pandemic.

Niamh Kiely. RANP Cardiothoracic Surgery St James’s Hospital Dublin.

I am one of 5 Cardiothoracic RANPs in St James’s Hospital, Dublin. As a result of the Covid 19 pandemic we have adapted our practice to meet the ever changing needs of both our patients and the hospital. We have transitioned our preadmission surgical clinic and our lung cancer surveillance & survivorship service to virtual clinics, and just like many of our colleagues we too have been redeployed. We are back in ICU caring for covid patients and also in two different private hospitals assisting in the management of our patients who are having their surgeries there.

Robert McConkey. RANP Urology (Bladder Cancer) Urology Unit, University Hospital Galway.

Urology patients, like others, have been adversely impacted by the COVID19 crisis with almost all surgery, day case services and outpatients appointments abruptly halted in UHG. Patients with high risk non muscle invasive bladder cancer experience some of the highest rates of cancer recurrence and are at high risk of progression to muscle invasive disease. These patients require frequent, often life long invasive cystoscopic surveillance as well as repeat chemo or immunotherapy bladder instillations. To continue caring for these ‘high risk’ patients, we developed and adapted a series of ‘COVID19’ protocols to enable the ongoing, although limited, delivery of day case and nurse led bladder cancer services with a strong emphasis on risk management and patient safety.

Orla Loftus Moran. RANP, General Practice. Knock, Co. Mayo.

General Practice is most likely the first point of contact for people in relation to health matters. General Practice Nurses are on the frontline of Primary Care tackling COVID19. As an RANP in GP I continue to…….. Deliver care for non COVID19 acute & minor illness, as a result of the crisis this is now often via telemedicine with remote triage & assessment, or in person if necessary. Carry out COVID19 risk assessment, if appropriate organise screening. Provide clarity, reinforce advice specifically about COVID19 concerns. Remotely monitor & provide wellness checks for patients with chronic conditions helping them stay well and avoid hospital admission. Prioritise Immunisations, Infant & Adult preventing further epidemics of infectious disease & reducing the burden of illness such as Influenza and Pneumonia . #TeamGP

Mr. David Delaney

David is the newly elected Secretary. He currently works in the Emergency Department of University Hospital Limerick. David graduated from the University of Tasmania in Australia and started his career in cardiac care. From there he worked in the Intensive care units of the Royal Hobart Hospital, Tasmania, the Royal Prince Alfred, Sydney, St. James Hospital, Dublin and University Hospital Limerick. He is currently a Clinical Skills Facilitator in the Emergency Department of University Hospital Limerick. He has previously studied a postgraduate diploma in Intensive Care Nursing with NUI Galway and is currently in his dissertation year of this Masters in Advanced Nursing Care also with NUI Galway. David will be a registered Advanced Nurse Practitioner once his MSc is complete. David also holds a position on the student subgroup of the International Council of Nurses NP/APN network.