Marie Curie adds nurses on information line to offer clinical support

Marie Curie has added nurses to its information line, offering clinical support for terminal illness

Marie Curie has added nurses to its information line, offering clinical support for terminal illness

Nurse Sam Clements at work on the Marie Curie information line. Picture: Marie Curie

The charity Marie Curie, which helps terminally ill people and their families, says nurses will in future be regular members of the staff operating its telephone information line.

It had added clinical support to its information line as a trial in February. 

The move means anyone in the UK with a terminal illness, and the people caring for them, can speak to a nurse about medical questions or concerns.

Memorable experience

Six registered nurses will be working on Marie Curie’s information line, which is open Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm and on Saturdays from 11am to 5pm.

A nurse working on the phone line, Sam Clements, said one of his most memorable experiences so far was with another nurse who called in. ‘I spoke to someone who called up talking about the symptoms of a patient, and because they had a lot of knowledge I had a feeling they might be a nurse.

‘After I spent some time on the phone to them, it transpired that they were talking about a close relative.’

Being there for a loved one

Mr Clements said it was important to help nurses recognise that it was okay to put their professional expertise aside in these situations. ‘I talked to them about the importance of being there for their loved one, rather than having to feel like they had to be a nurse in this situation.

‘I think I helped them realise that it was okay to stop and step out of their professional role.’

Marie Curie executive director of nursing, allied healthcare professionals and quality Julie Pearce said health and care staff could also use the information line. ‘The Marie Curie information line provides a confidential service and can be accessed by health and care staff as well as by patients and family members,’ she said.

Marie Curie’s information line is open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm and Saturdays 11am-5pm, on 0800 090 2309. It also has live chat on its website:

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