Safe And Effective Staffing: The Real Picture

This report paints a picture of an NHS struggling without the nursing staff it knows it needs| Royal College of Nursing 

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Image source: RCN

This report calls for the rest of the UK to follow the example of Wales and enshrine safe staffing levels in law following analysis which shows that there is approximately 40,000 unfilled nurse posts in England with a further 12,000 health care support worker vacancies. The report finds that care providers are increasingly hiring fewer registered nursing staff and that four in five NHS nursing directors have reported concerns that their hospital relies on the goodwill of staff to keep services running.

NHS research finds ‘direct link’ between staffing levels and death risk

New research at an NHS hospital has shown a “direct link” between the care individual patients receive from nurses and their risk of death due to low staffing levels | HSJ

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  • First UK study to link individual patient outcomes to nursing care and staffing levels
  • Patients were at increased risk of death when there was low staffing and high temporary staffing
  • High levels of admissions per nurse were associated with increased risk

Emerging findings from the study, the first of its kind in the UK to link nursing care to the outcomes of individual patients, also demonstrate a link between the risk of death and the use of temporary staff, as well as increased risks for patients when wards have high numbers of admissions.

Read the full article here

Delivering care under pressure

NHS reality check: Delivering care under pressure | Royal College of Physicians | OnMedica

Around three quarters of doctors (74%) say they are worried about the ability of their service to deliver safe patient care in the next 12 months due to pressures on the NHS, according to a survey carried out by the Royal College of Physicians (RCP).

The RCP launched a report today at its annual conference in which it detailed various concerns raised by the 2,101 doctors who responded to its survey.

The survey asked doctors about their experiences of delivering healthcare and their confidence in being able to raise concerns about patient care.

Focusing on their experiences of care over the past 12 months, 78% of doctors said demand for their service was rising and more than half (55%) of physicians believed patient safety had deteriorated.

More than a third (37%) said the quality of care had fallen while the majority (84%) had experienced staffing shortages in their team, while 82% believed the workforce was demoralised.

Read more on this at OnMedica

Full report: NHS reality check: Delivering care under pressure

Nurse shifts left unfilled at nearly every hospital in England

Analysis of official data finds 96% of NHS hospital trusts had fewer nurses covering day shifts than they had planned | The Guardian

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Almost every hospital in England has fewer nurses on duty than each believes are needed to guarantee safe patient care, research shows.

Analysis of official data by the Health Service Journal (HSJ) found that 96% of NHS hospital trusts in England had fewer nurses covering day shifts in October than they had planned and 85% did not have the desired number working at night.

The disclosure of such widespread failure to ensure hospitals are properly staffed has prompted fresh concern that a chronic lack of nurses and the NHS’s dire finances are putting patient safety at risk.

Read the full news story here

NHS Indicators: England, January 2017

The House of Commons library has published NHS Indicators: England, January 2017.

The full briefing paper looks at trends in the following areas:

  • Accident & Emergency attendance and performance
  • Ambulance demand and response times
  • Waiting times and waiting lists for routine treatment
  • Waiting times for cancer diagnosis and treatment
  • Cancelled operations
  • Delayed discharges and transfers of care
  • Diagnostic waiting times and activity
  • Waiting times for mental health treatment
  • Workforce numbers for doctors, nurses and other staff
  • Hospital activity, referrals and admissions
  • Bed availability and occupancy

Access the full report here

Brexit means… an uncertain future for the NHS?

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Both Brexit and the new government under Theresa May have major implications for the NHS. The health service is already facing financial turmoil and chronic staff shortages – both thrown into further uncertainty by the UK’s departure from the EU. But with political attention dominated by Brexit negotiations, will the service get the help it needs? Nigel Edwards sets out the challenges ahead in his latest Nuffield Trust blog .

Safe staffing for adult inpatients in acute care

A guide to help standardise staffing decisions in adult inpatient wards in acute hospitals | NHS Improvement

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This resource is based on the National Quality Board’s expectationsopens in a new window that to ensure safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led care, trusts will employ the right staff with the right skills in the right place and at the right time.

We’ve designed this to be used by everyone involved in clinical establishment setting, approval and deployment – from the ward manager to the board of directors.

The resource:

  • outlines a systematic approach for identifying the organisational, managerial and ward factors that support safe staffing
  • makes recommendations for monitoring and taking action if not enough staff are available on the ward to meet patients’ needs
  • builds on NICE guidelinesopens in a new window on safe staffing for nursing in adult inpatient care in acute wards

Read the full overview here