20 + years ago in the renal unit I worked in we held regular multi-disciplinary meetings (can't remember how frequently but more than monthly). Worked very well for the patients as all professions could influence the strategic management of each patient rather than just their day to day needs. It certainly encouraged mutual respect and a strong team approach. Yes we used to sigh when the meetings were due but looking back I can see that we took for granted a very valuable practice.
Comment on: Exclusive: Francis criticises nurse leadership
Anonymous | 14-May-2013 11:11 am Yes leadership is weak but so too is the voice of most nurses.
EVERY nurse must find their own personal leadership and take responsibility for their own actions. Not easy in the current climate but not impossible either.
I have no idea how effective the new NHS Leadership Academy programmes will be in improving leadership but whatever it's impact there is nothing to prevent nurses starting to change the culture themselves. Small steps within nursing teams can have a profound impact. Nurses have to stop waiting for others to lead the change.
I support what Francis is recommending but it seems to me that the biggest hurdle here is the lack of trust and the 'fear / blame' mentality presently pervading the NHS.
Bottom line ... if a duty of candour protected individuals as well as organisations would it be enough for individuals to trust that they would be supported? There's a big difference between not being held legally responsible and feeling supported in your workplace.
I'm not questionning that nurses have to find the courage to report failings ... it is imperative that they do. But words and laws don't help an individual who may feel marginalised and afraid.
Using only legislation and threats of punishment to tackle these issues adds yet another layer of fear and blame to the existing culture. The NHS has to wake up to the reality that although the most expensive resource nurses are also the most valuable. It is vital that for any new initiative to work every single nurse has to feel that he/she matters.
Resources have to be made available to start to rebuild the confidence, self-esteem and trust of all nurses within the organisation.
When completing a return to practice course 2 1/2years ago we were repeatedly told by uni tutor that she didn't want to hear 'shortage of staff' cited as a reason for what we experienced on wards. Everyone colluding!
Excellent news in such gloomy times. Well done Helene - a true pioneer for nursing. Good luck, hopefully you'll be advising other trusts in the not too distant future.