Community care nursing

The community nursing service teams provide nursing care to patients in the community, and support for carers.

Community nurses work closely with GPs, social services, hospitals and other healthcare staff to provide a service tailored to meet individual needs. The service helps patients cope with ill health and disability, thus allowing them to have the best possible quality of life, while maintaining dignity and respect.  

For more information on community care nursing in Northern Ireland, please see Strategic direction in community care nursing in Northern Ireland – Position paper.pdf published in November 2003.

Community nurses cover a wide range of services that work together to provide nursing care in the community, both in your own home and in the local health centre. They include the following.

District nursing

District nurses are skilled professionals who provide coordinated care to patients in their own homes. While district nurses generally work independently, they are supported by the rest of their team and work alongside other healthcare professionals, such as social services, to provide holistic, high quality care to acutely and chronically ill patients of all ages.

District nurses work very closely with GPs. They can provide access to specialist nursing equipment and teams, such as:

  • continence team;
  • tissue viability;
  • oncology and palliative care team;
  • diabetic team;
  • 24 hour nursing team;
  • heart failure nurses.

Treatment rooms

Treatment room nurses work in partnership with GP staff at health centres. For patients registered with a GP, the nurse can provide treatment, discuss health issues and refer to other health professionals as required. Treatment room nurses can carry out a wide range of clinical procedures and offer specialist advice on a variety of health and lifestyle issues. Read more

24 hour rapid response

The 24 hour rapid response nursing team provides nursing care and support over a 24 hour period to patients who can safely be cared for at home, rather than being admitted to or staying in hospital. This team also provides urgent out-of-hours nursing care. Read more 

Twilight nursing

A nursing auxiliary service provided for patients living at home.

Specialist teams

Specialist teams usually include a range of healthcare professionals and are designed to support and complement community nursing services in treating specific conditions or situations. Specialist nurses have not only a general nursing background, but also specialised knowledge and skills to deal with chronic disease management, eg diabetes, COPD, heart failure etc. Read more


Referrals to the service can be made through your GP, or by calling the referral call management centre. More information can be found at the links below.

Belfast Health and Social Care Trust:

Northern Health and Social Care Trust:

Southern Health and Social Care Trust:

South Eastern Health and Social Care

Western Health and Social Care Trust: