Chief Executive Peter Carter has highlighted concerns about the NHS employing an increasing number of unregulated healthcare assistants, who help nurses with duties such as feeding.
In an interview with The Times, chief executive Peter Carter said the amount of untrained workers had grown “exponentially” over the last 10 years and many were performing tasks without formal training, thereby putting patients at risk.
Mr Carter said: “What we have on hospital wards, and particularly in domiciliary care and care homes, is an unregulated, untrained workforce who are picking up so much of this on the job as they go along. Frankly, it’s nothing short of a disgrace.
“We require regulation and training in just about every other walk of life. Gas fitters have to be registered; but somehow when it comes to patient care we’ve got this unregulated, untrained workforce and then people wonder from time to time why there are problems.”
A spokesman for the Department of Health said: “The government intends to establish the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care (currently the CHRE) as the national accrediting body for a system of assured voluntary registers for groups that are currently not subject to statutory professional regulation, which includes healthcare assistants.”
Carter added that many newly trained nurses are “simply not up to the mark” having not spend enough time on hospital wards.
In an interview with The Times, chief executive Peter Carter said new nurses had spent too much time in classrooms rather than gaining practical experience.