Nursing Cover Statement

Tuesday 12 March

The RDCA has received the following statement from the Northern Health and Social Care Trust:

"Rathlin Island Nursing Service

Statement (Tuesday, 12th March 2019)

Unfortunately disrupted sailings to Rathlin over the next few days as a result of Storm Gareth have impacted temporarily on the Trust’s ability to provide the normal Rathlin Island Nursing Service.

The Rathlin Nurse who was due to be on the island until 4.30pm today had to leave at 8am this morning as no sailings were being scheduled later in the day. The incoming nurse due to go on the 2pm ferry sailing today was unable to transfer to the island. The Trust has been unable to make alternative arrangements and as a result, there will not be a nurse on the island to carry out district nursing duties for a period of time until a boat transfer can be safely achieved.

A Rathlin Nurse is on standby to travel across as soon as a sailing is available and to that end, the Trust has liaised with both the Rathlin Ferry Service and a private boat company regarding sailings. The advice given is that there may be a window of opportunity for a sailing on Thursday morning, however this is not guaranteed. Both services have been asked to contact a Senior Trust Manager as soon as the weather permits a sailing.

The two service users who are currently visited by the Rathlin Nurse daily have been risk assessed and plans put in place to meet their needs. The Trust Homecare service also visit daily and there is no disruption to this service.

As a contingency measure, a nurse will be available on the mainland to respond to phone calls from Islanders who can also contact their own GP in-hours and Dalriada Urgent Care out-of-hours for advice.

The Rathlin Development Community Association has been informed of the ongoing situation.

The Trust endeavours to ensure that the 24 hour nursing service to the island is maintained at all times and apologises that adverse weather conditions have resulted in a break in service. Trust Home Care Service and Floating Support service on the island have been unaffected.

A review will now be undertaken to determine if any other actions could have been taken to prevent this situation occurring."

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