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Francis report: Older person’s nurses to lead care

Specially trained “older person’s nurses” should lead improvements in care on wards with significant numbers of elderly patients, according to the Mid Staffordshire Foundation Trust public inquiry report.

A large proportion of the patients neglected at Stafford Hospital were older people who needed complex care.  

Inquiry chair Robert Francis QC says the needs of this growing patient group should be recognised urgently, and outlines how care could be led by a newly created role.

The “older person’s nurse” will require specialist training and will take the lead role in nursing of this group, the report notes. 

It will not be a requirement for all nurses working with older people but the aim is to move away from this area of care being seen as a “backwater” and to give it a “status in accordance with its proper social importance”, it says.

Readers' comments (6)

  • Susan Markham

    Ah... reinvention of the wheel... Geriatric Hospitals staffed by appropriately trained Registered Nurses... We used to have a lot of them 20-30 years ago... I know because I worked in them.

    What a breath of fresh of fresh air this report is!

    Who knows... eventually there may be a recommendation for specialist hospitals that deal with mental illness and suitably specialized Nurses to staff them (RMNs anyone?)

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  • Susan Markham | 6-Feb-2013 4:43 pm

    deja vue

    I wish they would get rid of admission wards, and admit patients to the appropriate specialist wards/units. Stop this conveyor belt system, and the endless repetition of assessments as they are passed from one team to another.

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  • As a care home nurse, my colleagues and I are frequently saddened by the state in which older people are transferred from hospital to our care. Dirty, unkempt, filthy fingernails, unsuitably dressed for trips in patient transport buses. Specialist nurses? get some people in who actually like and appreciate older people, then we'll be talking.

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  • Anonymous | 7-Feb-2013 6:14 am

    Unfortunately, that is a two-way street.

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  • I love working with older people. We have much to learn from them

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  • provided nurses are given adequate resources and training to meet the complex needs of the elderly, and the care is properly managed, it can be a very rewarding speciality to work in with several different branches to choose from.

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