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Health impact of long shifts must be investigated, says union


Todays demand on qualified nurses and midwives means that nurses quite often work beyond their normal 7.5hrs of duty. I am retiring this year after 39yrs in the NHS. Starting as a HCSW, Staff Nurse, Charge Nurse and lastly as a Clinical Ward Manager. I have worked both 7.5hrs of duty and 12 hours of duty, and preferred the 12hours shifts, meaning I did not have to battle commuter traffic and had quality time off with my family. It is not just the young nurses coming through that enjoy the days off when working 12 hour shifts. What is important in todays demanding clinical environment is that there is work life balance. It is interesting, that when our pilot 6 month long day model was audited, their was overwhelming support to keep the model from nurses of all age ranges, and the patients feedback was that it gave better consistency in care delivery. Nurses who are working excessive days of 12 hours shifts are more than likley to be working bank, and this would need close monitoring. Nursing shortages add to the demand to nurses to backfill and cover shifts, and not to mention the current payscales.

Posted date

16 April, 2015

Posted time

1:38 pm