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‘On your bike’ order to community nurses


Community nurses to lose car allowances

Exclusive by Flora Spilo

Community nurses have reacted with fury to the news that they are to be forced to travel to patients’ homes by bicycle.

An investigation by Nursing Times has revealed plans to abolish petrol allowances for all district and community nurses and health visitors in England. Instead PCTs will provide vouchers to be spent in cycle shops.

Josie Kita, director of expense disbursement at the Primary Care Accounting Agency, admitted that the plan may be unpopular with many nurses, but denied that it was simply a cost-cutting measure.

“There may be some cost efficiency benefits but the primary motivator was to improve staff wellbeing,” she told Nursing Times. “Cycling is an excellent way of keeping fit and will enable nurses to fit their exercise regime into their working day.”

“There will also be time savings in places with traffic congestion, where cycling is actually quicker than driving,” she added.

Rita Feyal, a community nurse in Northumberland, said the scheme would be unworkable in her rural area.

“It’s like we’re living in the film The Killing of Sister George. My patient appointments can be over 20 miles apart. It is ridiculous to expect me to cycle up to 80 miles a day. They haven’t thought this through. Even in urban areas, what will happen to people who aren’t able to cycle? And where will we keep our equipment?”

Ms Kita said nurses would be able to take cycling proficiency lessons, and that the PCCA would also fund secure panniers for equipment storage, as well as reflective red crosses and blue-light helmets for use in emergencies.

The agency is planning to pilot the scheme in two urban and two rural areas in summer, with country-wide roll-out by the end of the year.

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Readers' comments (29)

  • april fool got yeh!!!

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  • Nice try for April the first !personally I think they should be made to use roller skates

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  • This has got to be an April fool's joke! ha ha very funny.

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  • Best April fool I have seen in a long time. It was going so well until it got to the blue lights and red crosses!

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  • Authors name gives it away. Rearranged it spells APRIL FOOL!!

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  • I would like to work form home if this was true and only cover one area I now have to travel 24 round trip home to base and cover 3 areas. Please give us a laugh for 1st April.

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  • It can't possilby be true. For heaven's sake what would all our DNs and HVs complain about if they weren't picking up parking tickets???

    On a side note - clever as this story is - lets hope no one in influence doesn't see this and think it might work.........

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  • Josie Kita is an anagram of 'its a joke'!

    Haven't worked out Rita Feyal yet.....

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  • Rita Feyal = fairy tale


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  • nadine woogara

    April Fool from Nursing Times! Well done to everyone who spotted the anagrams!

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