Parkinson’s Nurses are employed by the local health board, clinical commission group (in England) or acute hospital. However, in certain circumstances, we do fund new specialist nurse posts, and work in partnership with the NHS who will be responsible for the nurse during this period.
In terms of the role of the nurses, this is dependent on how the service has been set up and where the nurse is based. Each service has been set up to meet the needs of the local community. Nurses will either be based in a hospital or community setting. In some instances nurses may work across hospital and community settings. If a nurse is based in a hospital setting they may if appropriate sit in with the consultant during consultations. They would also be working closely with ward staff to ensure that if people are admitted they receive the right care, getting their medication on time and are discharged as soon as possible with the right support. In a Community based setting the nurse would predominately be seeing patients in a variety of settings including community based clinics, nursing and care homes and if appropriate in their own homes, they would liaise with consultants but would not do clinics with them.
There is no formal Parkinson’s Nurse Qualification, Parkinson’s nurses come from a variety of backgrounds and bring with them skills and experience that they have built up over the years. All of them will have had gained experience of working with people with neurological conditions including working directly with people with Parkinson’s. There is also a set of nationally recognised Nurse Competencies that clearly identifies the knowledge, education and skills required by experienced nurses to support people with Parkinson’s.
I hope this helps answer your questions, but please do let us know if you'd like more information or if you'd like to talk to someone here more about this.
Joanne - Digital team.