The campaign’s special week got off to a great start with James Titcombe appearing on ITV’s Daybreak, mentioning NTSOS as he revealed details of his new job at the CQC.
His new position as national advisor of quality and safety proves that things are changing – patients and their relatives are being listened to and the changes they want to see can, hopefully, start to be made.
But while James is a beacon of hope of how things can be different – and by that I mean safer – there is still far too much bullying, blame culture and burying of bad news and concerns.
Our twitter feed and our email inboxes at Nursing Times have been filled with nurses and clinicians telling us that they have raised concerns and been ignored – or worse, intimidated.
Clinicians are the best placed to raise the alarm when something is wrong. They see a lack of resources, witness poor practice and often know instinctively what “good” should look like. So surely we should listen to them? Surely we should value these people who don’t follow the herd and have the courage to speak up and say that something isn’t right?
This week is about encouraging employers to do just that. We want every employer to stand up and say that they don’t just support their staff who speak out and raise concerns – but actively want to encourage them to do so. Because those chief executives know that listening to staff and respecting their judgement is the best way to keep their patients safe and their staff happy.
So with that in mind, why have so many trusts still not signed up to the campaign? If your organisation is not listed here (www.nursingtimes.net/sos), it has not made the public commitment to support staff who raise concerns that we want all trusts to make. And we think it should. So go to our website and download the letter we’ve drafted and send it to your CEO and ask them to sign up to the commitment.
We think those raising concerns should be valued. And we want all trusts to show that they feel the same way.
Jenni Middleton, editor
Follow me on Twitter: @nursingtimesed