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Southampton General chief denies staff shortages

One of the bosses at Southampton General Hospital insists the staff shortage is under control.

Judy Gillow, director of nursing at the hospital, has pointed to the instant success of a large-scale recruitment drive.

Inspectors had expressed concerns that a stretched workforce was putting the quality of patient care at risk. Hospital chiefs were subsequently invited to the city council to explain the situation.

Mrs Gillow told councillors on Southampton City Council’s Health and Overview Scrutiny Committee that employing more nurses has been their number-one priority for some time.

Southampton General Hospital was among 17 hospitals criticised by the Care Quality Commission over staffing levels, a problem labelled a “moderate concern”.

The commission’s report discovered some patients were left alone for long periods of time, leaving them more vulnerable to falls.

Patients were left unsupervised because of a shortage of nurses. The hospital was also found to rely on agency staff, to the detriment of continuity care.

Addressing the council panel, Mrs Gillow admitted it was disappointing to learn of the inspectors’ concerns. She believes they caught the hospital on a bad day, a day when there was “significant operational pressure” and a Black Alert in place.

An action plan had been introduced to solve staffing levels before October’s inspection, which has led to an additional 110 nurses added to the workforce in the last 12 months. The trust now employs 3,346 nurses.

Councillors were informed that the vacancy rate stood at 9%, with a target to reduce the figure to 5% by summer and to 2.5% by autumn.

 

Readers' comments (6)

  • Bla, Bla , Bla and Judy Gillow, director of nursing can also argue black is white !

    Why such a huge vacancy factor ? was that anything to do with frozen posts?

    110 nurses ? that number of nurses needing to be recruited points to gross managerial incompetance ! and is evidence that managers at Southampton dont give a toss about patiet safety !

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  • tinkerbell

    Jenny

    nursing times are asking for suggestions on topics to discuss perhaps one could be

    'do most managers give a toss about patient safety?' Should i word it a bit better?

    before putting it forward as something to discuss?

    Unsuitable or offensive?

  • As Mandy Rice Davis once famously said; "well she would say that wouldn't she".

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  • "Addressing the council panel, Mrs Gillow admitted it was disappointing to learn of the inspectors’ concerns. She believes they caught the hospital on a bad day, a day when there was “significant operational pressure” and a Black Alert in place".

    What she really means is it was a bad day when she did not have the opportunity to cook the books to make it look like there were sufficient staff on duty.

    Unsuitable or offensive?

  • What was Mrs Gillow and her management team doing before Octobers inspection visit, asleep at their desks?

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  • of course there are not enough staff, why lie, it doesn't help anyone. every day is a bad day.

    Unsuitable or offensive?

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