Intravenous therapy at home

When Edward Alton from Hartlepool was told he would need treatment for a painful chest infection, he expected he would need to spend time in and out of hospital.

But Edward has actually been able to have the intravenous therapy he needed from the comfort of his own living room.

intravenous-therapy-at-homeFor two weeks, a rapid response nurse visited his home in Hartlepool twice a day to carry out the antibiotic treatment through a catheter into a vein.

Now this course of treatment has been completed, he still receives regular visits from a community nurse to check on his health.

Eddie said: “When I was told I would need IV treatment, I was quite concerned I would have to spend a lot of time coming into hospital. Like most people, I don’t like spending time in hospitals – I would much rather be at home with my wife and with my home comforts rather than being on a busy ward where it can be difficult to relax.

“To be told I could stay at home to have the treatment was a big relief. I think it has helped my recovery.

“The same nurses would come to visit me, so they knew me personally and knew all about my health issues, it became a very easy routine. It was so much easier than having to go into hospital.”

Edward has suffered with chest pains for several years – at its worst he had to spend several days in hospital to receive treatment for pneumonia.

Over the last year he suffered more pain and was diagnosed with a bacterial lung infection, pseudomonas.

For many years he has also suffered with bronchiectasis, a long term condition where the airways of the lungs become widened, leading to a build up of excess mucus which make the lungs prone to infection.

He said: “I was getting more and more out of breath and just coughing all of the time. It was after seeing a doctor and being diagnosed that I was told I would be able to have my treatment from home.

“All of the community nurses who have treated me have been fantastic and have always been there to help me – even if I want to just pick up the phone to ask them a question.”

Community rapid response nurse Katy Ingledew said: “By linking in with hospital staff we are able to create a system where we can visit a patient’s home and carry out this treatment.

“For Eddie and many others, being treated in your home is far more relaxing and comfortable than being in a busy hospital.

“I absolutely love being a community nurse, visiting patients in an environment they are far more comfortable in.”

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