New endometriosis nurses appointed to all Wales’ health boards to improve awareness and diagnosis
Specialist endometriosis nurses have been appointed in every health board across Wales in a bid to improve services for the chronic condition.
Endometriosis, which affects one in ten women, causes tissue – similar to the lining of the womb – to grow in other places, such as the fallopian tubes and ovaries.
Often debilitating for those with the condition, endometriosis can cause painful periods, chronic back and stomach pain and difficulty getting pregnant.
It can take years for women to receive an accurate diagnosis – greatly impacting the quality of their lives.
The appointments were made via the Women’s Health Implementation Group, which was set-up by the WG in 2018, with a budget of up to £1m a year to deliver schemes to improve women’s health services.
All nurses are now in place and will spend time with patients and clinicians to improve services. They will also work together to share best practice and ensure a consistent level of services across Wales.
In addition, the WHIG have developed a dedicated website for patients and the Nurses to use. Endometriosis Cymru includes personal accounts from women across Wales and a symptom tracker which could become a diagnosis tool for patients and clinicians to speed up diagnosis and treatment
The posts are being funded by a £1m per annum investment from the Welsh Government as part of wider plans to improve women’s health services.
Health Minister, Eluned Morgan said: “Endometriosis affects one in ten women. It can cause serious pain and can seriously impact quality of life for women affected by the condition.
“Our Women’s Health Implementation Group is progressing vital work to support women’s health and the appointment of a dedicated endometriosis nurse in each health board will help raise awareness, diagnosis and treatment of this serious condition across Wales.
“I have heard of distressing accounts of misdiagnosis and women with this condition not being taken seriously with this condition, I am determined that women in Wales get the service they deserve.”
During Endometriosis awareness week (3-9th March) The Health Minister and Chief Nursing Officer for Wales, Sue Tranka met six of the newly appointed nurses, Jo Kitt from Aneurin Bevan, Beth Pucella from Cwm Taf, Sam Robinson from Hywel Dda, Amanda Price from Powys Teaching Health Board, Jenny Shaw from Swansea Bay and Mao Alberto from Cardiff and the Vale. Lizzie Bruen from Cardiff and Vale Health board, who helps mentor the new nurses in their roles also attended.
Jo Kitt Endometriosis Nurse from Aneurin Bevan, said: “Endometriosis can be a debilitating condition but with the right care we can seriously improve patient’s quality of life. I look forward to working with all the new nurses to share best practices across Wales.”
The Health Minister added: “Historically women’s health services have not had equal treatment and women’s voices have been ignored.
“I am determined that we raise the standards of all women’s health services in Wales and this summer I will be publishing a Quality Statement setting out how that will be achieved.”
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