OVER the last year, the way the world views our NHS nurses and health workers has changed as Covid-19 hit Wales.

Nurses have always been there for us – the angels who quietly get on with looking after us from cradle to grave. During 2020, they have become true heroes with people coming out of their houses every week to applaud and celebrate these brave and committed men and women.

Nyrsys (Nurses) a new series starting on S4C on Wednesday, November 25 takes the viewer straight to the front line by following the work of community nurses at the Hywel Dda Health Trust in west Wales during the pandemic.

Community nurses care for the most vulnerable patients in their homes. During an unprecedented year, the pressure on the community nurses of west Wales is more intense than ever before.

The first programme will be following Elen Lewis, a nurse in the Cardigan and Newcastle Emlyn area, who has had personal experience of the effect of Covid-19.

She lost her aunt Undeg in April and this loss was a shock to the entire family.

Elen said: “At the beginning of April, we knew that she was ill and she wasn’t getting any better.

“The doctor sent her to Glangwili Hospital, and she got sent almost straight away to the intensive care unit. But, sadly, she never came home.

“After she went into hospital, because of lockdown, no-one could go in to see her. Her husband, Tudur, had to go home and had a phone call to say that she had passed away.

“And I just think about how he felt not being able to be there, not being able to hold her hand, it was just so cruel to lose somebody in that way.

“The truth is nobody is safe from this virus. It’s still here. Keeping our patients safe and keeping ourselves safe – it is all we can do.”

Siân Williams, a nurse in Cross Hands, Carmarthenshire agrees: “As nurses, we have had a pretty bad summer with Covid. It has been really difficult to adapt to working differently, trying to make the right decisions for our patients, making sure that they are safe, making sure that we are safe ...”

During the first programme, viewers will see how much the patients depend on the community nurses not only to provide care but also for company.

Because patients have been more housebound than usual during lockdown, there is a warm welcome for Elen in many homes, including Molly James, who is in her 90s and is suffering with a painful sore on her leg.

Elen also goes to treat Bernadette Dolan who is recovering after having five operations on her leg after a fall last December. She had metal plates placed in her leg, but her body rejected them and she had to have another operation to have them all removed in June, during lockdown.

Over to Cross Hands, Carmarthenshire and the programme follows Siân as she visits 18-year-old George with spina bifida. George was supposed to have an operation on his bowel which would have helped him live more independently, but this has been delayed due to Covid-19 and he will have to wait until next year.

Also, Siân is seen dealing with an emergency situation. The team receive a call to say that that a woman has fallen in her home and has lain where she fell all night. The programme follows all the action in the health centre and at the woman’s home as the emergency services open the patient’s front door and take her to hospital.

In the second episode of the series, the viewers meets Teleri Gwyther who works as a cardiac nurse in Ceredigion.

She has almost 40 years of experience working as a nurse. She visits Trevor Peregrine who recently had two stents placed in his heart. But despite this, he is a fit and healthy man in his 90s who has travelled the world during his life.

The programme will also follow young nurse Lowri Davies on her first day of treating patients by herself. We hear about her feelings and her nervousness of having to go into a patient’s house alone and having to make on the spot decisions.

Nyrsys goes out on S4C on Wednesday, November 25 at 8.25pm, English subtitles available. It is also available on demand on on S4C Clic, iPlayer and other platforms.