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Family Nursing & Home Care educates home care staff to reduce the number of UTIs

Wednesday 05 December 2018

Family Nursing & Home Care educates home care staff to reduce the number of UTIs
Family Nursing & Home Care (FNHC) hosted training sessions for home care staff to help them identify the clinical signs and symptoms of Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs), in a bid to reduce the number of occurrences amongst islanders.

FNHC’s Community Clinical Nurse Specialist for Continence and Ostomy, Fiona Le Ber, ran hourly training sessions for home care staff and district nurses, who visit residents in residential homes, last week at Gervais Le Gros Centre in St Brelade.

Bronwen Whittaker, Chief Executive Officer at FNHC, said: ‘FNHC invests in professional training for staff to ensure we are providing the highest levels of care to islanders. We also want to encourage and share best practice amongst care homes and raise standards of care across the island. We hope that by working with and providing education for local home care staff we can reduce the number of UTIs reported and the number of antibiotics prescribed to islanders. There have been many reports about the overuse of antibiotics and it is important that home care staff can play a role in helping to ensure that residents take the necessary steps to look after themselves and help to prevent UTIs wherever possible.’ 

It has been identified that nearly half of residents in care homes in England are frequently prescribed antibiotics based on the use of routine urine dip sticking. FNHC has adopted guidance from the NHS with the scheme ‘To Dip or Not to Dip’, which is a patient-centred approach to improve the management of UTIs in the care home environment. The outcomes are to ensure the appropriate use of antibiotics and a reduction in potential health infections.

This is being achieved by implementing an evidence based clinical process for use by home care staff who identify, record and share the patient’s clinical symptoms of UTIs with their GP. The toolkit, which will be used by home care staff to diagnose and manage UTIs in nursing home residents, includes a patient assessment tool, an education and e-learning package, posters and resources on how to keep hydrated and how to recognise UTIs.

Areas in England that have introduced the ‘To Dip or Not to Dip’ approach have shown a reduction in: 

  • The proportion of residents who had an antibiotic for a UTI by 56%
  • The number of antibiotic prescriptions by 67%
  • The number of residents prescribed antibiotic prophylaxis by 82%
  • Unplanned hospital admissions for UTIs, Urosepsis and Acute Kidney Injury 
  • Calls to GP practices for inappropriately diagnosed UTIs.

‘These statistics show the value of care providers implementing this scheme and we hope to see similarly successful results in Jersey,’ added Miss Whittaker. 

For more information on FNHC’s services, please visit

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