|Appears in Collections:||Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport Journal Articles|
|Peer Review Status:||Refereed|
|Title:||The use of innovative methods designed to relieve social isolation in patients with chronic heart failure; volunteer befriending, forums and a newsletter|
Denvir, Martin A
Chronic heart failure
|Citation:||Peardon L, Yellowlees D, Pratt R, Reid J, O'Donnell M, Ness A, Chalmers C, Leslie S & Denvir MA (2010) The use of innovative methods designed to relieve social isolation in patients with chronic heart failure; volunteer befriending, forums and a newsletter, European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, 9 (3), pp. 181-187.|
|Abstract:||Introduction: Social isolation in patients with chronic heart failure (CHF) is an adverse prognostic factor. This paper reports the creation of a supportive patient/carer network (Heart Failure Support Service), led by a voluntary sector/National Health Service (NHS) partnership which involved volunteer befriending, regular patient and carer forum and a newsletter. The project: Over 3 years, 37 volunteers were ‘befrienders’ to over 50 individuals with CHF. A thorough training and matching process ensured that the first befriending visit was a positive experience. 100% of patients found the visits from the volunteer worthwhile and said they would recommend the service to other patients. Prior to the first patient–carer forum, 200 questionnaires were sent out with a 56% response rate, 44% of respondents believed that a forum and a newsletter would be valued. Over a period of 3 years, 12 quarterly meetings were held with an average attendance of 30–40 per meeting. The newsletter (current circulation > 800 per quarter) contributed to self-management and encouraged communication between professionals and patients–carers. Conclusions: The Heart Failure Support Service (volunteers, forum and newsletter) created a supportive patient–carer network and represents a successful voluntary sector/NHS partnership.|
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