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'I want every nurse to be proud', says next CNO


Nurses should be respected and be able to have pride in their profession, according to England’s next chief nursing officer.

Jane Cummings was appointed as CNO on the new the NHS Commissioning Board Authority in March. The body will be responsible for much of the day to day running of the health service at a national level.

Speaking at the inaugural Student Nursing Times Awards last week, Ms Cummings said nurse education and training was “fundamental to the success of the NHS in the future”.

She told those attending the awards ceremony in London “it was clear” the country had “some fantastic teaching institutions” and “some fabulous lecturers”.

Ms Cummings went on to highlight the importance she attached to having pride in being a member of the nursing profession.

She said: “I want every nurse to be proud of their profession, every time they go to work. I want nurses to be respected for the care they deliver and the difference they make to every patient they meet.

“It is a privilege to be a nurse and the skill of today’s nurses is to treat patients with compassion, dignity and respect and at the same time, ensure this is consistent wherever we deliver care and however complex or technologically advanced the treatment is.”

She added: “This calls for professional knowledge, leadership and vision all underpinned with a desire to put the patient’s needs first.”


Readers' comments (18)

  • I suggest she tells the patients to respect the nurses as patients today are so rude and aggresive She says you should be proud to be a nurse I used to be when i trained and nursed for the first 30 years but all thats gone now. Its just become a stressful short staffed nightmare with no respect or caring from management or patients. Ive just retired and am glad Im now out of it

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  • I have to say that l agree with much of what Enid has said. Nursing was about caring but these days that seems to have gone by the board.

    I would like to know where the nursing leaders are these days. Who is Jane Cummings never heard of her before today.

    Even the trade unions have gone silent and do not appear to strand up for members rights anymore.

    Look at Mid Staffs, it wasn't the profession that put a stop to the wrongdoing. These days we do not have the nursing leaders who have the willingness to say what needs to be said, and individuals are simply frightened to say what needs to be said.

    I do wish Jane Cummings well, for she has a major task trying to keep the nursing profession from slipping into the abys.

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  • It does, of course, take two to tango.

    With rude/aggressive pts, telling them quietly, politely but firmly that their behaviour isn't helpful seems to be the best way to address the situation - "the soft answer turneth away wrath". It usually works (although not c. my other half!!).

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  • A lot of patients and relatives give us nurses very little respect and this seems to be the way of the world at the moment.
    Of course, it may be the behaviour of some nurses that might have caused this at times, however the whole NHS system doesn't help.
    Poor communication and dishonesty from the system leads to patients and relatives being frosty from the start as they seem to expect poor treatment or care before we've got anywhere near them!

    I'm not feeling particularly proud of being a nurse at the moment, neither do I want a career in nursing for much longer, the way I feel presently.

    I'm hoping our new CNO can do something to improve this as I'm loathe to waste 8 years of study getting where I am today only to want to leave and do something else.

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  • Give nurses better pay and then we may feel more proud of our profession

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  • Anonymous | 8-May-2012 9:22 pm

    there is a very serious economic crisis in Europe. Perhaps we ought to help getting that sorted before demanding more money for ourselves. Some have no jobs and no income to feed their families and many of the most vulnerable in society are in a very precarious situation. If everybody expects too much too soon and makes more demands on the system it will never help improve the situation.

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  • I'm not proud to be a nurse anymore. I was proud when I first qualified 20 years ago. Stress and exhaustion are the first words that spring to mind now when I think of my career.
    When did it all start to go wrong well as well as short staffing paperwork has a lot to answer for many of the problems an ex nurse who was visiting a patient describes nurses to me as paper nurses, she could not believe the amount of writing that was on her husbands file.
    I find the general public have no respect for us, they look for fault and blame straight away as previously stated.
    The CNO has quite a task to transform nurses to feel proud again, start from the top cos managers need to respect us first.

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  • it seems all this paperwork is counter-productive and detrimental to patient care. it takes the nurse away from the bedside for too long and with so much written much may never be read again and some which is essential may be so hastily read it may lead to errors through not seeing the wood for the trees.

    As re instilling pride in members of the profession who no longer have it, this could be a very long and arduous process taking more than one generation of nurses.

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  • Anonymous | 9-May-2012 8:47 am

    Not only is it the amount, but the repetition also. How many times do we write the same things on different forms? How many times do we have to record the same statistic?

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  • Every nurse definitely wishes to end the inordinate amount of paperwork we deal with. The worst of it is, that most paperwork we fill out has very relevence (if any) to direct patient care. At best, it is proof that we have fulfilled patient care criteria, at worst it is a weapon to deflect litigation. Nurses are not stupid; we know that the reams of paperwork exsist to minimise risk of legal action arising from the 'where there's blame there's a claim culture which has insiduously crept into the general public's psyche. The irony is, that the general public agree that we are filling out too many documents but the threat of legal action from some members of the public dictates that the NHS has to protect itself. Only when the Government deals with the culture of 'ambulance chasing' will we once again, be able to get back to basics, back to the bedside and back to giving hands-on care.

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