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RCN calls for politicians to implement 'milestone' nursing report

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The Royal College of Nursing says political leaders must act urgently to ensure the recommendations in a “milestone” report on the future of nursing become reality.

The final report of the Prime Minister’s Commission on the Future of Nursing and Midwifery – titled Front Line Care – was published today. It sets out 20 recommendations on how the nursing and midwifery professions should be developed and supported.

Responding to the report, the RCN urged all parties involved in healthcare policy and delivery to act immediately to “ensure its vision becomes a reality”.

RCN director of nursing and service delivery Janet Davies said: “Today’s report marks a milestone for nursing and will direct how the profession evolves to ensure patients continue to receive high quality care in the future.

“What is important now is turning this ambitious vision into reality,” she said.

The college in particular highlighted its support for recommendations that directors of nursing be recognised as champions of high quality care and be responsible for the shape and size of the nursing workforce in their organisation, and the need to strengthen the role of ward sisters.  

The Royal College of Midwives also said it supported recommendations for better representation of nursing and midwifery at board level.

RCM general secretary Cathy Warwick said: “It is particularly valuable that the report recommends that Heads of Midwifery (HOMs) should report directly to the board or at least to the director of nursing. The RCM prefers the former. 

“This should reverse the current situation where the HOM’s voice is only heard at a low level within organisations. The RCM believes that this has been one of the reasons that maternity services have historically struggled to have their voice heard locally.”

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