RNs - England

Understaffing is leading to poor care, nurses tell Lansley

Stephen Adams, New York Daily News, May 22, 2012 The Health Secretary was warned by nurses last week that chronic understaffing had led to many instances of poor care. One nurse, Rachel Armstrong from Liverpool, claimed that some nurses were caring for as many as 18 patients at a time. "We have seen in the press government rhetoric stating that the nursing profession needs to be taught how to care and that there are many cases of meaningful neglect," she told Andrew Lansley at the Royal College of Nursing's annual congress. "I cannot emphasise enough that nurses do not go into work with the aim of giving poor care." ...

NHS to lose 100,000 nurses in next decade due to government cuts, health report warns

Over a quarter of nurse workforce lost in next 10 years. Daily Mail, July 18, 2011 Around 100,000 nursing jobs could disappear from the NHS over the next decade, a health report warned today. A report by the Royal College of Nursing revealed that the NHS could be crippled by government spending cuts, retirement rates and fewer training places. Independent research analysed the impact of all three factors on Britain's hospitals. ... NHS

Warning over nurse workforce cuts

Belfast Telegraph, July 18, 2011 The NHS in England could lose nearly 100,000 nurses over the next decade, according to new research. The report found that in the worst case scenario, 28% of nurses might be cut from the current workforce of just over 352,000. The Queen Margaret University study, commissioned by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN), examined eight possible sequences of events taking into account training places for nurses and midwives, rates of retirement and overseas recruitment. ... Warning

Failing hospitals should close, says nurses' union leader

Failing hospitals should be merged or closed if the NHS is to improve care and provide better value for money, the nurses’ union leader has said. Murray Wardrop, The Telegraph, June 17, 2011 Ministers must be “brave” and shut underperforming hospital which are a “drain on the system”, warns Peter Cater, chief executive and general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing. He urged the Government to look beyond the short term political scars of closing debt-ridden hospitals and lead a “paradigm shift” required to save the NHS. ... Failing

Reform slowdown could stop erosion of nurse influence

Dave West & Crispin Dowler, Nursing Times, May 17, 2011 Further political pressure on government plans for a comprehensive transfer of NHS decision making powers to GP led consortia could help salvage the formal role of nurses in commissioning. The government is reviewing health secretary Andrew Lansley’s Health and Social Care Bill and “substantive” changes have been promised. Liberal Democrats and senior national NHS managers are understood to be pushing for “clusters” of primary care trusts to be kept for the foreseeable future, instead of being abolished in April 2013 as originally planned. ... Reform

Unison: Tory NHS cuts putting lives at risk

Danny Buckland, Daily Mirror, May 12, 2011 Some 64% of NHS health workers say the Government’s cuts are putting patients’ lives at risk. The reforms have hit staff morale so hard that 65% have considered quitting, a Unison study found yesterday. Cuts of around £20billion over the next three years will see 40,000 NHS jobs lost, and 60% of health workers have already seen people sacked. A Unison spokesman said yesterday: “The Health and Social Care Bill is a dangerous experiment, at the wrong time, and must be dropped.” The Royal College of Nursing added: “Nurses are holding the NHS together, but patients will suffer if the pressure mounts further.”

NHS reaching crisis point, survey suggests

Politics.co.uk, May 12, 2011 The number of patients being treated by nurses has shot up just as staff numbers fall, a new survey suggests. The survey, conducted by health union Unison to coincide with 'Nurses' Day', paints a bleak picture of life in the NHS as concerns over the government's proposed healthcare reforms grow. "The results of this damning survey are both sad and shocking," said Gail Adams, Unison head of nursing. "Nurses and midwives see first hand the damage that the government's cuts are inflicting on patient care, so it is perhaps not surprising that 65% say they have considered leaving the NHS." ... NHS

NHS Direct nurses fight plans to make them work more weekends

Sarah Calkin, Nursing Times, May 12, 2011 Nurses working for NHS Direct have lodged a collective grievance after being told they will have to work more weekends in a bid to improve the organisation’s performance. About 80, mostly band 6, nurses who work for the triage service on a part time basis are affected by the rota changes, Nursing Times understands. They will require part time staff to work five weekends out of eight, the same number as full time staff. Currently the number of weekends worked by part time staff is worked out on a pro rata basis. ... NHS

Nurses are prepared to consider striking as hospital board faces vote of no confidence

Cornish Guardian, April 15, 2011 Unions have warned that senior nurses and midwives facing downgrading at a Cornish hospital – which is engaged in a £19 million cost-cutting drive – would consider strike action as well as an unprecedented vote of no confidence in management. Dozens of nurses at the Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust (RCHT) are having their roles reassessed, but union leaders say strict procedures have been cast aside and morale has plummeted to rock bottom. Trust managers have insisted they have followed guidelines and the changes are about simplifying structures rather than saving money. ... Nurses

Town honours Spanish Civil war nurse

Reading Post, November 24, 2010 A nurse from Reading who voluntarily cared for anti-Fascist fighters in the Spanish Civil War will be honoured in the town tomorrow. Reading borough mayor Councillor Gul Khan will lay roses at the Spanish Civil War memorial outside the Civic Offices to mark the centenary of Thora Silverthorne’s birth. Ms Silverthorne was born in Wales on November 25, 1910, but moved to Reading to work as a nanny for Somerville Hastings, Labour MP for the town in the 20s and early 30s. She was an active member of the local branch of the Communist Party of Great Britain while in Reading and travelled to Spain to become a voluntary nurse when the civil war broke out. ... Town

Time to care must not be jeopardised by NHS job cuts

Jenni Middleton, Nursing Times, November 16, 2010 Understandably, the inquiry on Mid Staffs has been a major part of virtually every conversation I’ve had with healthcare professionals since it started a few days ago. Regardless of their discipline, or whether the person I’ve been talking to has been in an acute or primary situation, they have all raised concerns that our current financial backdrop and the news that nearly 27,000 jobs could go from the NHS, will mean that another Mid Staffs is “inevitable”. A chilling remark considering that as we go to press, news emerged of another tragic case at the same trust. ... Time

Nurses’ vote of no confidence in managers

Phil Coleman, News & Star, November 16, 2010 Nurses at north Cumbria’s two main hospitals have passed a vote of no confidence in senior managers. A ballot of 620 nurses from The Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle and Whitehaven’s West Cumberland Hospital, showed that 98 per cent have no confidence in bosses at North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust. All the nurses who took part in the vote are members of the Unison health union. Union officials said today that nurses across the trust felt demoralised after a review proposed cutting the number of nurses. ... Nurses

Nurses pass no confidence vote in Cumbria health trust

BBC News, November 15, 2010 Nursing staff at the North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust have passed a vote of no confidence in the board's management. The Unison members were described as "down and demoralised" after a review which proposed a reduction in the number of nurses on the wards. They said there was a risk this would affect patient care. The trust said it was working with staff to meet the "significant challenges" it faced in the future. All 1,100 Unison members at the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle and the West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven were balloted. More than 620 papers were returned, and of those 98% said they had no confidence in the management ... Nurses

NHS set to lose 27,000 jobs, warns nurses' union

Royal College of Nursing chief criticises government for creating 'cocktail of instability' in rush to save £20bn. Randeep Ramesh, Guardian, November 12, 2010 Almost 27,000 NHS posts have been earmarked for cuts, the Royal College of Nursing has said, blaming a "cocktail of instability" arising from the government's attempt to make efficiency savings of £20bn while radically shaking up the health service. In a report entitled Frontline First, the nurses' union says the loss of 26,841 staff posts, identified from 100 trusts, is the equivalent of closing almost six hospitals the size of the Royal Free in London, or nine the size of Alder Hey ... NHS

University move to all-degree nursing

Kim Briscoe, Norfolk Eastern Daily Press, October 14, 2010 From 2013 all new nurses will have to study to degree level, but the University of East Anglia is planning to phase out its nursing diplomas from as early as next September. Health correspondent Kim Briscoe finds out how degree-educated nurses will benefit patients. Each year the University of East Anglia (UEA) takes on 200 new student nurses, many of whom will stay and work in the region. Currently about half of those opt for a three-year degree, while the other half study a three-year diploma, although some of these will convert to a degree mid-course. ... University

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