NHSreality warned you that it was happening near you. The problems of Mid Staffs and Sussex Mental Health services are endemic. It is time to plan your hospital advocate. He/she should visit frequently, check there is a diagnosis, check on the investigations and treatment, and be willing to attend more than two or three times a day in the acute situation… Hopefully readers will have a family member available…but if not? We have known staffing levels of doctors, midwives and nurses are too low, and falling, for some time, but only when it is too late to correct has government reacted. This Christmas is not a time to be ill.
Shocking new figures have revealed nine in 10 NHS hospitals are failing to staff wards properly, putting patients at risk.
Figures revealed by the Health Service Journal show 90 per cent of hospitals do not meet their nurse ‘safe-staffing’ levels. Each trust sets a target for a minimum number of nurses on wards – day and night – to ensure that patients are safe and then publish how often their targets were met.
The figures for August show 207 out of 232 hospitals – 90 per cent – failed to meet safe levels for daytime shifts. Some 81 per cent did not meet their night-time safe levels and 79 per cent missed both. The figures have declined since the rules were introduced in April 2014.
The analysis of 232 English hospitals shows that 90 per cent have failed to meet their own nurse ‘safe-staffing’ targets
Patients were put at far higher risk of serious medical errors as well as falls and malnutrition by ‘dangerous’ staffing levels, the five-year study of 150 hospitals found.
Experts say there should be at least one nurse for every eight patients – and one for every four if dedicated care is required.
There is a nationwide shortage of nurses – partly blamed on the Government slashing university training places.
Many hospitals have to poach nurses from overseas or hire agency staff on up to £1,800 a shift.
Last week ministers tried to tackle the crisis with plans to recruit 1,000 ‘nursing associates’. They will do two years’ supervised, on-the-job training with starting salaries of £19,000.
But unions branded it a ‘cheap’ measure to replace properly qualified and experienced nurses.