Nurses say they feel undervalued, exhausted, and unable to give the quality of care they would like to.
As winter hits the UK a record-breaking 57% of registered nurses say they are now looking to leave their jobs.
A survey by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) found that 57% of nurse respondents admitted to either thinking about leaving their job or are actively planning to leave.
The reasons for this include feeling undervalued (70%); feeling exhausted (60%); and that they can’t give patients the level of care they would like to (47%).
Their findings mirror a similar survey by NursingNotes earlier this year.
Around three-quarters of the respondents reported having worked when unwell on at least one occasion over the previous 12 months (77.4%) or regularly working beyond their contracted hours at least once a week (74.1%); and just over half of these members (53%) reported these additional hours were unpaid.
The poll of the pandemic.
Yesterday a record number of Omicron cases were recorded and figures show hospital admissions rapidly rising.
RCN General Secretary and Chief Executive Pat Cullen said: “As the pandemic moves into a third calendar year and now we face another Covid wave, our members talk vividly about the toll of the pandemic and years of understaffing.
“Nursing undoubtedly has the potential to be a hugely rich and satisfying career, but with tens of thousands of nursing jobs unfilled the situation is unsustainable.
“All nursing staff need funded and supported time out – not limited to annual leave – for all staff, regardless of which setting they work.
“Likewise, where staff have taken time off due to illness, rest and recuperation must be central to decision-making about their return to work. Proper mental and psychological support services need to be made available.”