The Francis report was clear that nursing was not working and made a series of recommendations broadly welcomed by the profession. Although it was damming about some nurses and the care they did not give it gave hope for the future. But this response to the detail and consideration in the Francis report feels a bit too much of a sideways swerve, a dodge even.
Years ago I worked with a nurse manager who was happy to tell her staff that their standards were too high. She rarely ventured onto the wards where standards of care were a problem. Wearing a suit and managing with extremely long arms from an office several floors away from her wards meant she rarely saw a patient let alone what was happening behind the curtains.
We often receive calls from people with random queries or requests that we simply can’t help with.
Six months ago I received my second favourite text to date. A picture of an eight week ultrasound and the words “You’re going to be an aunty!”
Many nurses feel like they are working in a war zone even though they are actually working in a NHS district general hospital in a town or in the outskirts of a city. They don’t have enough staff, enough equipment and feel stretched to their limits. They feel concerned they are failing their patients and not supporting families.
As a mental health nurse working on an acute ward, I found that all too frequently the handover I was given contained the dreaded words “two in a bed”. We didn’t physically have two patients sharing a bed, although a glance at the list of patients might make you think we were. This phrase referred to one patient being on leave and another patient being admitted in their absence. So a 20-bedded ward could technically be accommodating 21, 22 or more patients. Often, this meant the leave ...
No patient’s care should ever be reduced to a job list. Yet nurses have resorted to task-based care in NHS organisations that have failed to put patients first.
For those of you out there who are striving every day to deliver compassionate and high-quality care to your patients within the current resource and staffing constraints of the current NHS, this is an even more difficult day than usual. It is hard to hear criticism of the profession.
Isabella Bailey was admitted to mid Stafford hospital with a hiatus hernia. During her hospital stay her family became so concerned about standards of care on ward 11 they decided to keep watch over her 24 hours a day.
Pressure ulcer reduction is one of the latest targets directed at nurses, as reported by Nursing Times last week. New rules linking them to trust funding mean you will face increased pressure to hit targets on reducing pressure ulcers this year.
It’s freshers’ week and all over the country student nurses will be starting out on a training that will contain experiences and challenges that will be with them for the rest of their life. Nurse training changes your life – not just in career terms but also personally.
While there can be few groups within the NHS looking forward to the Francis report into Mid Staffordshire Trust, the nursing profession appears to have most to fear. Large swathes of the general media already seem to assume that the largest proportion of blame rests with nurses.
Everyone has an opinion on what makes a good nurse. Words such as kind, caring, empathetic, patient, efficient, compassionate, organised, giving and thoughtful trip off the tongue – and then there are the thorny question of cleverness and vocation.
It seems that my resolutions have a five to one hit rate – that is of five resolutions only one will come good. But nevertheless I am thinking now about my list of do more/do less and hoping that some of them will stick.
I was idling my time away on twitter a few weeks ago and came across a blog by Dean Royles, the director of the NHS Employers.
As the news focuses again on the dangers of going into hospital and the pressure I wonder if we are missing something fundamental.
Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia are devastating both for those unlucky enough to develop them, but also their families.
It was when I was editing one of this week’s articles on stroke that I was struck by the reference to interdisciplinary working and how it was benefiting patients.
For 35 years my mother lived with bipolar disorder. It is difficult to imagine what it must have been like for her not to sleep for days on end and at other times just sit and cry and cry and cry. It was hard enough watching it.