Claire Dearie – Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust
Claire Dearie has been a community matron for nine years, in Rawdon, Beeston and now Bramley for the last two and a half years. She finds it very satisfying: she can manage her own time and can build great relationships with patients and their families.
The role of community matron is to support people, of all ages, who have long term health conditions which cannot be cured. Claire helps people with a wide range of conditions including chronic pulmonary diseases, Parkinson’s, dementia and heart failure to manage their condition, improve their quality of life and remain in their own homes. This may include advice, referring to specialist organisations and, quite often, helping make a tweak in medication. She has about 40 patients on her list at any time.
Claire visits people in their own home and is also available for advice on the phone. Her view is very much ‘Ring me’ – identifying a problem early can prevent someone from having to be taken to hospital in an emergency.
People are referred to Claire by their GP. Claire also works closely with a range of other professionals, including memory nurses and social workers, and also helps people get support from specialist organisations such as Parkinson’s Disease Society.
Claire feels her role is very important with older people, because she can build a long term relationship with them, work with family and carers, and visits patients in their own homes.
“It’s very satisfying.
I can build up great relationships
with patients and their families”
With loneliness and social isolation now recognised as so damaging to people’s health, Claire really understands the importance in people’s lives of organisations like BEA, and regularly puts us in touch with patients who would like to get involved. She notices that men often need far more encouragement than women to get out and get involved in social groups.
Working in the NHS can be challenging, especially when there are long waits for some services, but Claire works within a lovely team at Armley Moor Health Centre.
Claire originally hails form the Midlands but has lived in various places in the North, and is now in Osset. She loves the outdoors, and running, which she is currently building up to 16 miles! Since having children, now aged 3 and 5, Claire works three days a week.
Read about other people working in the local community.