9 ways the Francis report could change your nursing practice
How will the Francis report affect your nursing day? Here’s how …
- Allocation of key workers on every shift. Patients should be allocated a key nurse for each shift responsible for coordinating their care needs
- Improving of the nurse/doctor relationship.The patient’s key nurse should be present, wherever possible, at every interaction between a doctor and their patient. Nurses can advocate for the patient and coordination of care will be improved.
- Ward managers to come out of the office. Ward nurse managers should ensure and develop a clinical aspect to their role, working alongside staff as a role model and mentor
- Complexity of older people’s care recognised. The report suggests the development of the creation of a status of registered older person’s nurse.
- Regular rounding. Contact and interaction between nurses and patients to be systemised by regular ward rounds to improve engagement with patients.
- Who’s who to be clearer. Name badges and uniforms to make it clear to patients and relatives the difference between HCAs and registered nurses
- Testing applicants for nursing. Potential student nurses should be tested by at least three months of work experience of hands-on care, including time with the elderly and possible aptitude testing to assess caring and compassion and other professional values
- Keeping up to date. Nurses need to ensure they keep up to date through continuing professional development. The report recommends that nurses have an annual learning portfolio, signed by them and countersigned by their manager.
- Standardised training for HCAs. As well as regulation of HCAs, the report calls for a common set of national standards for the education and training of healthcare support workers. Robert Francis points out that the minicab driver who takes a patient to hospital is subject to regulation under which they can be disqualified if not a fit and proper person, but the HCA who washes the patient and accompanies him or her to the toilet is not.