One in three patients believe there are not enough nurses to care for them.
The vast majority of patients trust and have confidence in nursing staff but some admit to worrying that their care may be affected by unsafe staffing levels.
In its latest adult inpatient survey, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) captured the views and experiences of 73,000 patients who stayed in a hospital in England throughout in November 2020
The results reveal that 83% of patients had confidence and trust in the nurses treating, with this figure being slightly higher at 84% for doctors.
Worryingly however more one in three patients (38%) said they believed that there were not enough nurses availible to care for them. The survey results come on a backdrop of 40,000 registered nursing vacancies across the NHS in England alone.
Professor Ted Baker, Chief Inspector of Hospitals at the CQC said that at the time of the results inpatient admissions were slightly lower compared to November 2019 and a second wave of COVID was about to hit the country.
He said; “Given this context and the unprecedented pressure on staff it is excellent to see such positive feedback in a number of areas. The high levels of satisfaction reported by so many people reflect the tremendous efforts of healthcare professionals on the front line and their dedication and resilience is to be commended.
“Patient feedback is incredibly important in helping shape how care is delivered and the survey results provide an incredibly useful guide to where improvements can be made. More can be done to ensure all patients are provided with sufficient information and have access support to help them recover and manage their condition outside of the hospital setting.”
Safe staffing legislation has recently started to be introduced in Wales and Scotland but there is nothing planned for England.
Responding to the results of the survey, Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the NHS Confederation the group that represents hospitals, said: “In the face of a second national lockdown last November, these survey findings show how NHS hospitals delivered for their patients despite facing immense pressure.
“We owe a great deal of gratitude to the NHS after everything it has done for patients over the last eighteen months, particularly as its workforce could come up against similar challenges again this year as cases of coronavirus continue to rise, alongside the threat of flu, increased demand for mental health services, and tackling the elective care backlog.
“Health leaders and their teams should be very proud of the results and where improvements have been identified, they will be committed to examining their individual scores in detail.”