NHS patients at risk due to nursing cuts
- 12 Nov
The Royal College of Nursing claims that nearly one in six nursing posts at some NHS hospitals are vacant.
Some NHS hospitals are functioning with 20,000 less nurses than needed, a new report from ministers has warned.
Across the NHS in England there are a total of 19,526 full-time nursing posts left unfilled due to the Whitehall-ordered drive to save £20bn by 2015 in "efficiency gains".
The RCN's chief executive Dr Peter Carter, has said that the health service is about to be hit by "a hidden workforce crisis" due to the hospital trusts having pared their staffing levels "down to the bone" reports the Guardian.
Official NHS workforce data highlights that the service in England has removed 3,859 full time equivalent nursing, midwifery and health-visiting posts since 2010, which equals 6,468 because many NHS staff work part-time.
The RCN claims vacancy rates show a wider gap between the number of staff in post and the number needed to ensure high-quality patient care.
"With rising demand for healthcare services, workforce shortages will have significant implications for staffing levels and the ability of providers to deliver safe, good quality care for patients," the RCN warns in the report, called Running the Red Light. Understaffing on this scale "will have serious consequences for patient safety".
One in five trusts are recruiting nurses from abroad to fill gaps whilst another 9% are considering doing so, said the RCN.
Peter Walsh, the chief executive of patient safety charity Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA), said: "The extent of nursing shortages is very alarming given the urgent need to improve patient safety evidenced by the Mid Staffordshire and other scandals.
Norman Lamb, the health minister, said: "Nursing leaders have been clear that hospitals should publish staffing details and the evidence to show the numbers are right for the services they deliver. Patient safety experts agree that safe staff-patient ratios should be set locally. We will be announcing more on our plans to guide staffing decisions in our full response to the Francis report later this autumn. Overall, the number of clinical staff in the NHS has increased by nearly 4,100 and the number of admin staff has fallen by 22,800. The chief inspector of hospitals will be able to take action if trusts are found to be compromising patient care by not having the right number of staff on wards."
Andy Burnham, the shadow health secretary, said: "This report shines a spotlight on the true extent of understaffing in the NHS. David Cameron has left the NHS facing an A&E crisis with thousands fewer nurses. We should be bringing on the next generation of British nurses, but he's cutting trainee nurse posts whilst wasting money on overseas recruitment."
What do you think of this? Tweet us your comments @suppsolutions
Image source: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1314902
- 25 May
CARE HAS IMPROVED CONSIDERABLY IN ENGLAND
Almost three fourth of 372 care homes rated inadequate in 2014 and still operating have improved.205 care homes have improved from a low rating to requiring improvement, 68 are now rated good and 99...
- 24 May
NHS ADJUSTMENTS TO BUDGET CUTS
NHS trusts which have been previously rated good or outstanding will not be inspected as frequently as before, but those rated as inadequate will be regularly visited by the CQC.The Guardian reports...
- 19 Mar
Government to inspect if housing can reduce NHS costs
In the Budget document the government have said it's looking at the ‘cost-effectiveness of options to integrate spending around some of the most vulnerable groups of people.' This includes...
- 15 Oct
End of life patients are lacking support
The charity has found that almost 92% of NHS clinical commissioning groups do not provide round the clock telephone helplines, reports the BBC.Guidelines say there should be 24-hour telephone...
- 15 Sep
Social care is being limited due to council cuts
ADASS are warning that cuts are making the care system "unsustainable" with charities saying hundreds of thousands of people are struggling without help, even though the government says councils have...
- 17 Jul
Young people should not be placed in B&Bs says MPs
The Commons Education Select Committee has said that B&B accommodation is "threatening and frightening" and should only be used in emergency situations reports the BBC.MPs say that young people...
- 16 Jul
Special measures system designed to improve failing care homes
A scheme similar to special measures of hospitals will be introduced for care homes and home care agencies next year, ministers will say, reports the BBC.This will cover 25,000 services and could...
- 14 Jul
Research says that one in three Alzheimer's cases can be prevented
The research says that the main risk factors of Alzheimer's is lack of exercise, smoking, depression and poor education, reports the BBC. Alzheimer's Research UK said age was still the biggest risk...
- 10 Jul
NHS boss says those with vulnerabilities need joint health and care budget
Simon Stevens wants to see older people, those with disabilities and people with serious mental health problems given joint pots from the NHS and council-run social care services, reports the...
- 17 Jun
Council falters in reviewing autistic man’s care plan
According to Community Care:"The ruling was made by the Local Government Ombudsman after the man's mother complained that his physical and mental health deteriorated in the two-year period after...
Support Solutions 5th National Housing Support & Social Care Conference 2014 Good organisation from beginning to end. Excellent keynote speaker. Relevant and important topics for discussion which were to everyone's advantage within the supported housing sector. B.H - Stevenage Haven