Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more


‘CNO was right to recognise challenges facing nurses'

  • 1 Comment

The chief nursing officer for England last week spoke out about the removal of the student bursary, telling delegates attending the Health and Innovation Expo that the move puts us into “uncharted territory” – though I’d argue “massive gamble” is more accurate.

No one has any idea what impact making students pay education fees and maintenance costs will have on the 2017 intake. No one can be confident we will see the 10,000 more nurses training that the government has promised us. 

But what is good news is that the professional lead for England’s nurses and midwives is speaking out on this issue and other all-important developments that will shape the world of nursing so dramatically.

Jane Cummings spoke about the bursary, the proposed introduction of the nursing associate role and, significantly, what these measures are being introduced to help resolve – reducing the spiralling pressure on services caused by increasing demand and the nursing shortage.

Such honesty about the big challenges nurses are facing is welcome, and it is something I’ve been calling for in Nursing Times for a number of months.  

We may not have the answers yet, we may not have the Plan B if the student intake doesn’t increase, and chief nurses can’t fill their rosters. But recognising the problem is half the battle. A problem cannot be fixed until it is acknowledged. The CNO is doing the right thing in uniting the profession behind her to help form a plan to tackle these unprecedented challenges. As she said in her speech, nurses and midwives must “have a seat at the table as we tackle the challenges ahead” and “we should make a case for the change we want to see”.

Readers have been telling us they want more online and less in print, and so for the rest of this year, we will be sending you a fortnightly print digest with highlights of the news and best practice. We will still be updating you every day with the latest news online and sending you Nursing Times Weekly every week straight to your email inbox (see for details). You’ll be able to read that on your phone, tablet or laptop. In 2017, we are going to publish Nursing Times monthly. It will be a larger magazine, digesting and analysing the news, and providing a more in-depth clinical content section.

Your subscription also gives you access to Nursing Times Learning, which can help with revalidation and maintaining your knowledge  and skills. If you haven’t activated your subscription yet, go to nursing




  • 1 Comment

Readers' comments (1)

  • I fear that she 'wants a seat at the table' to' make a case for the changes she wants to see'

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.