About the Ask-a-Nurse Helpline

The ISF operates an Ask-a-Nurse Helpline service which provides direct, accessible and specialist guidance for people affected by all types of skin conditions in Ireland.  

The Ask-a-Nurse Helpline operates on an appointment model, this allows us to match people seeking support with a nurse best suited to help with the skin condition or issue being experienced.  

The service offers an uniterrupted opportunity for a personalised, private, and meaningful exhange about your skin with a specialised nurse.  

You can contact us by clicking the link below. The service is completely free. 

Thank You! Helpline Sponsors 2023

We could not operate our unique service without the support of industry leaders in dermatology.  

We are very grateful to our sponsors for their support of the Ask-a-Nurse Helpline in 2023, AbbVie, Amgen, Novartis, Pfizer, Sanofi, and UCB. 

How does the Ask-a-Nurse Helpline work?

If you need assistance, we answer general phone and e-mail queries during opening hours and where necessary, arrange a call-back appointment from an ISF nurse.

All ISF nurses are dermatology clinical nurse specialists working in hospitals in Ireland. In order to assist with your query, we will ask you some basic questions to help us understand your situation, such as whether you have a diagnosis from a GP or have seen a dermatologist. If you have a diagnosis in advance, we will be in a better position to assist you.

How can the Ask-a-Nurse Helpline help me?

We can: 
  • inform, guide and answer queries about hundreds of skin conditions and diseases
  • offer support and education to people with skin disease and their loved ones
  • direct callers to appropriate information and services
We cannot:
  • diagnose a condition or prescribe treatment / arrange treatment

“I have psoriasis, I got very helpful and practical advice from the ISF and it was great to speak to a dermatology nurse who really understood where I was coming from” – Seán (33).

“I’ve been living with HS for over twenty years, I didn’t know there was help or how to get in touch with other people in the same situation.  I spent nearly an hour speaking to a nurse about my condition, it’s an incredible service and the ISF booklet really helped me speak with my GP” – Corena (38).

“My daughter has very bad eczema, she can’t sleep and I needed advice about how to use emollients properly. The ISF Helpline gave me excellent advice and tips” – Jane (Mother of 2-year-old).

“I suffer with rosacea and needed advice about a special sunscreen that suits my skin. The ISF had several helpful suggestions” – Susan (50).

The impact of skin conditions

At least one third of the population is affected by a skin condition¹ and between 15-20% of GP consultations specifically relate to the skin².  This represents between 3.5 and 4.7 million GP consultations in Ireland each year ³. Waiting times for hospital dermatology appointments can be quite long; perhaps as much as a year. Skin diseases can be very distressing and cause over 180 deaths each year in Ireland, including 113 deaths due to malignant melanoma⁴. Conditions like psoriasis, eczema, acne, rosacea and hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) significantly impair quality of life, often to an extent that is as great as some life-threatening conditions such as cancer⁵.

Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

The ISF is committed to the highest standards of privacy when dealing with your query. You can read our Privacy Statement here and our Terms of Use here. The ISF is a member of the Helplines Partnership.

1: Hay et al, The Global Burden of Skin Disease in 2010: An Analysis of the Prevalence and Impact of Skin Conditions, Society for Investigative Dermatology, (2014) 134, 1527-1534.

2: Reported by the Primary Care Dermatology Society of Ireland (2015).

3: The Irish Medical Organisation estimates that there are 25 million GP consultations each year, www.imo.ie and the National Association of General Practitioners (NAGP) estimates that in 2014 23,308,910 GP consultations (comprising GMS patients and private patients) were held in Ireland (NAGP: Pre-Budget Submission 2016).

4: In Ireland between 2003-10 an average of 181 people died each year as a result of diseases of the skin and subcutaneous tissue (68) and melanoma (113); figures from the OECD.

5: Skin Conditions in the UK: a Health Care Needs Assessment, NHS, 2009.

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