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Enteral Feeding

Home Enteral Feeding Service

The home enteral feeding service is a community based service which provides all dietetic and specialist nurse support for patients who are fed by a feeding tube in the community setting, across County Durham and Darlington (with the exception of Easington). The team work closely with Nutricia, which is the company contracted to provide the feeds and associated equipment, to ensure a high quality comprehensive service is provided.

The service provides personalised training and education sessions to everyone involved with the care of the patient, covering patients, their carers, nursing and residential homes, schools and nurseries. This includes:

  • Managing the feeding pumps and simple problem solving.
  • Change and removal of some tubes.
  • Unblocking of tubes.

The service also provides:

  • Dedicated dietetic support and monitoring of the patients feeding needs.
  • The insertion and management of some tubes.
  • The management of problems with the stoma site and feeding tubes.
  • Support for the patient on discharge from hospital.
  • Care and support to enable the emotional and social aspects of home enteral feeding to be managed effectively.
  • The service is one of only a few in the country that does not need the patient to obtain prescriptions from their GP to obtain their feeds.

The team has regular contact with patients and their carers to support them with all aspects of enteral tube feeding. They ensure all new patients are registered with Nutricia Homeward service and patients have a constant supply of home enteral feeds and equipment. Patients are reviewed according to need.

The service is available Monday to Friday 9.00am - 5.00 pm. Out of hours, there is a national out of hours nurse advice line - 08457 623636 - manned by the contracted home enteral feeding company's nurses.

Service information

Patients are referred to the service through a variety of healthcare professionals.

The team is based at Bishop Auckland Hospital first floor, covering County Durham and Darlington.

'I have to compliment everyone on their pleasant persona and their expertise and knowledge. By the end of the 5 days, I did not feel as though I had been in a hospital ward and was very relaxed.'

Patient, Ward 16 Orthopaedics, University Hospital of North Durham