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Continence Service

Continence is an important factor in a person’s health and well-being at any stage of life.

It is estimated that 14 million men, women, young people and children of all ages are living with bladder problems, roughly the equivalent size of the over 60 population in the UK. It is also estimated that 61% of men in the general population experience lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) and around 34% of women are living with urinary incontinence.

6.5 million Adults in the UK suffer with some form of bowel problem. 1 in 10 of the population are affected by faecal incontinence, with over half a million adults suffering from faecal incontinence, with a negative impact on their lives. It is likely that 0.5-1% of adults experience regular faecal incontinence that affects their quality of life[1].

Incontinence is a subject which many people find difficult to discuss or seek help for and often causes anxiety, loss of self-esteem and can be isolating. A lot can be done to help cure, treat or manage bladder and bowel problems and there is a much wider choice of treatments, products and management options available to people.

The IOW NHS Trust’s Continence Service aims to support and provide care, solutions and advice to those with needs; promoting and maintaining dignity at all times whilst enabling them to take an active role in society where possible. The advisors are all passionately committed to providing individualised holistic care for each service user.

Alison Spearman, Continence Service Team Leader said “We know many people are suffering in silence and not seeking help because they are either ashamed or embarrassed. A lot of older people believe it is an inevitable result of ageing, but it is not something you have to put up with just because of your age. We want people to be aware of us and the help we provide to manage the problem for people of all ages”. Please contact your GP who will be able to carry out preliminary tests before referring you onto the service.

As well as providing care, support and advice to individuals, their families and carers the team have written guidelines and developed documentation to support patients and healthcare professionals. One of these documents is the Catheter Passport.

A Urinary Catheter Passport has been written for people with long term catheters. The document will contain patient specific personal information, catheterisation history, change record, how the patient manages day to day, self-management advice and much more.

The purpose of the catheter passport is to improve communication across Trust Services and reduce catheter associated urinary tract infections. The Catheter passport has been developed to ensure people who are catheterised receive the optimum standard of care by improving communication between the hospital, community services, the ambulance service, out of hour’s service and the person”.

All patients with a long term catheter in situ should have been issued with one and all new patients will be supplied with one when they are first catheterised. Please contact your district nursing team or the healthcare professional providing your catheter care if you haven’t been issued with a passport. ”

The Continence service will also support hospital staff in meeting the needs of complex individuals whilst they are staying in hospital, such as those with spinal injuries.

Continence Advisors are available Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.
Continence Administrators are available Monday to Friday from 9.30am to 3.30pm.

Telephone: (01983) 552457
Email: iownt.Continence-Service@nhs.net

 [1] Excellence in Continence Care (2018) NHS England

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