Basic nursing care is being unintentionally missed in a trade-off between staff and time.
Half of nurses say their last shift at work was “unsafe”, and basic nursing care is being missed because of staffing shortages.
A NursingNotes survey asked 1,411 registered nurses from across the UK about their last shift at work and found that a massive 53% believed their last shift at work was unsafe due to a lack of nurses on shift.
Responding to the survey, one nurse claimed they were often the “only registered nurse” on a night shift for an acute hospital ward.
Shockingly over two thirds (67%) of nurses also admitted to having witnessed basic nursing care, such as personal care and pressure area care was, was being unintentionally missed in a trade-off between staff and time.
Another nurse admitted their ward was so short-staffed that “essential nursing care” was “no longer essential”. Staff were sometimes forced to choose between providing personal care or administering life-saving antibiotics.
Protect our patients.
The news comes only days after a King’s Fund report concluded that a Conservative party pledge of 50,000 more nurses has failed to have any “substantial impact”.
Official figures suggest there are currently 40,000 unfilled nursing vacancies across the NHS in England alone.
Grassroots campaigning group Nurses United say the results are unsurprising.
Lead organiser Anthony Johnson said, “This is not new news. All nurses know that we’re understaffed, and this Government constantly ignores our pleas to bring our NHS back to safety.
“That’s why we need to be organising in preparation for the upcoming pay deal and make sure that we take whatever action, political or industrial, is necessary to protect our patients.”
Earlier this month, MPs rejected a plan for the second time to publish a regular healthcare workforce analysis designed to identify and help tackle the shortfall in staff.