Wymondham woman to fight axing of nurses

Dianne Fernee, organiser of the Wymondham Dementia Support Group, with some of the knitted and croch

Dianne Fernee, organiser of the Wymondham Dementia Support Group, with some of the knitted and crochet forget me knots she is collecting, hoping to get 17,000, one for each person living with dementia in Norfolk. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

A woman is preparing to fight a decision to scrap a valued dementia support service which she says is vital to both those with dementia and their carers.

Dianne Fernee, the organiser of the Wymondham Dementia Support Group, is starting a petition with a difference in an effort to sway the decision by the South Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to drop the South Norfolk admiral nursing service.

Mrs Fernee is in the process of collecting personal experiences of those who care for people with the condition which she will read out at a workshop held by the CCG on October 27.

She hopes the words will highlight the struggle more than signatures on a petition.

Mrs Fernee said: 'I think our petition has to be a petition of words. We have asked people to keep diaries of their experiences.

'We cannot afford to lose them [admiral nurses]. They keep people out of hospital and enable people with dementia to stay at home for end of life.

'The role of the admiral nurse is important. They support the whole family.'

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The service will come to an end later this month after the CCG was unable to finalise a deal with Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT).

Antek Lejk, chief officer of South Norfolk CCG, had said he knew the decision may be disappointing, but the CCG cannot afford to continue with a service which it knows is inequitable and unsustainable.

Earlier this year the Wymondham support group launched an appeal to raise £20,000 to fund an admiral nurse.

Mrs Fernee said she will continue the appeal in which she will collect and auction off 17,000 knitted and crocheted forget-me-nots - one for every person in Norfolk living with dementia.

The workshop will be held at the Willow Centre in Cringleford between 12pm and 2pm.

Anyone who wants to help with the forget-me-not campaign can contact Mrs Fernee by email ferneed252@gmail.com or phone 07712 727897.