Demelza’s registered nurses and healthcare assistants offer specialist care for children and young people with serious or terminal conditions and their families.

They are at the heart of what we do, and deliver high quality support and care to children and their loved ones, so they can enjoy their time together as a family, for as long as they have. As a nurse led service, where the team are supported by medical input from specialist tertiary centres, Demelza registered nurses are autonomous practitioners delivering the best care services.


A health care assistant administering care to a child.

Professional development

Demelza is committed to supporting our people with their professional development, which includes training in a clinical competency framework to support specialist paediatric palliative care, symptom control and end of life support, opportunities to attain professional and academic qualifications and regular high quality training.

A nurse, wearing a medical face mask, plays with a young girl who is sitting on her bed.

The clinical working environment

Many children with serious or terminal conditions can have complex health and social needs – we look at the holistic needs of the child and family and try to meet specific unmet needs and provide the resources and care they require.

Our registered nurses, supported by supported by healthcare assistants, do not just provide expert medical care. An important part of their work is spending time with families, supporting them to manage their child’s care and create special memories and experiences.


Our Care Workforce

Appropriate staffing levels are maintained at our hospices, with nursing and care teams providing round-the-clock care to children. An on-call system is also in operation for additional guidance and support, if required.

Registered nurses can be band 5, 6 or 7, depending on their level of skills and knowledge. Some senior registered nurses are band 8 or band 8a. There are a number of band 3 or 4 health care assistants on every shift depending on the skill mix and number required for the children staying or being admitted. 

Two nurses stand outside Demelza's Eltham hospice.

Work patterns

With the nature of round-the-clock care, appropriate staffing levels are required throughout all hours of the day. On average shifts are 12 hours long, and there are a range of contracted hours including full time, part time and flexibank. Some night duty is required, and rotas are planned in advance so nursing and care teams know what is coming up. Demelza also offers paid enhancements for unsocial hours.

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Demelza nurse Melissa at the East Sussex community hospice.

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