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Staff with additional respiratory care skills are being issued with bright yellow lanyards at one trust to help colleagues easily identify those who can help patients with breathing difficulties.
The move is part of Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak, which has also seen nurses and other healthcare workers receive extra training on respiratory care.
“We need to ensure our nurses feel safe in caring for patients they wouldn’t normally care for”
An online learning package for non-respiratory nurses and clinicians was developed by the large hospital trust to help ensure more staff had the skills to care for people with respiratory problems.
The training package, which was put together in just 48 hours in collaboration with the trust’s professional development, elearning and respiratory clinical teams, has since been shared with more than 50 other trusts and received more than 20,000 views.
The eye-catching yellow lanyard – which is emblazoned with the words “respiratory skills” – was the brainchild of Craig Bradley, associate nurse and deputy director for infection prevention and control.
“We developed the yellow lanyard as part of our Covid-19 planning response, so that staff who may be asked to look after respiratory patients could easily identify colleagues who had additional expertise and could offer support,” said a trust spokeswoman.
She said the organisation had also developed a set of criteria to ensure “only those colleagues with respiratory skills are wearing the lanyard”.
Gloucestershire Hospitals said it expected more than 200 people would be donning the yellow lanyard within the next few days.
The trust’s chief nurse, Professor Steve Hams, said ensuring nurses and other staff felt confident in caring for patients they may not normally see was vitally important.
“Preparing our nurses and healthcare workers to care for a significant rise in respiratory patients has been a key priority over the past week,” he said.
“We need to ensure our nurses feel safe in caring for patients they wouldn’t normally care for,” he added. He went on to praise the hard work and efforts of trust staff.
“Our teams are doing brilliantly and this is part of a package of measures we have developed to ensure staff are well cared for and supported during this difficult time,” he added.