First birthday celebration for NINES

Posted by
info@newrytimes.com
Friday, July 21st, 2017
Community

The Southern Trust’s Northern Ireland New Entrants Service (NINES) is celebrating one year of providing healthcare support to the migrant population.

Aimed at helping people who enter the area from other (non UK) countries, NINES offers nurse-led health care advice and initial health assessments for adults and children not already registered with a GP.

Since it was set up a year ago, the service has had around 1,142 referrals, offering health assessments, TB screening and health care advice.

Funded through the Southern Local Commissioning Group and developed in partnership with the Public Health Agency (PHA), NINES is the first point of contact to the health service for new migrants, asylum seekers and refugees, offering health promotion advice and information on how to register with a GP and access other services they may need.

Margaret Bunting, Lead Nurse for School Nursing and NINEs said, “In the Southern area we have the largest migrant population in Northern Ireland and this continues to rise. We want to ensure the health and wellbeing of our whole population by giving everyone living in our community the same access to health and social services.

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“Moving far from your home can be a difficult experience, with feelings of isolation and fear and through this service we are glad to help our newer communities get the best start on arrival.

“Through NINES we offer an introduction to health and social care for people new to the country, ensuring they get an initial health check and explaining how our system works. Each client gets their own personal health record and will be referred onward to appropriate services that they may need.”

The service works closely with interpreting services and BME groups to overcome any cultural or language barriers and has recently appointed a Bilingual Health Care Assistant to the team. They also work with the community and voluntary sector and local employers to raise awareness and encourage new migrants to avail of the service.

Genovaite Zvirbliene, from Lithuania was referred to NINES by her daughter’s School Nurse, as the family had no GP. Genoviate says that her experience of NINES has been very positive, professional and helpful with completing the documentation and GP registration process.

With the help of an interpreter the Health Protection Nurse Specialist for the service paid Genoviate weekly visits to monitor her blood pressure and overall health until she was fully registered with her GP. She said she would definitely be recommending NINEs to other migrants new to the country.


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