Liver disease is the fifth biggest killer in the UK and, according to the British Liver Trust, the only major cause of death still increasing year on year. NHS Choices says there are more than 100 different types of liver disease affecting at least two million people in the UK at any one time.
In September, the RCN published a competence framework for nursing staff who are caring for people with liver disease. The framework is based around nine liver care competencies, including: undertaking a comprehensive clinical assessment; developing a self-management plan with the patient; and using early warning tools to identify a patient’s changing and deteriorating condition. The aim is to help equip nursing staff to identify those at risk of liver disease, promote healthy livers and lifestyle, and care for people with existing liver disease.
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