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#NurChat - Is the Nursing and Care Quality Forum a waste of money?

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Did you miss the latest #NurChat Twitter debate about whether or not the Nursing and Care Quality Forum is a waste of money? Let us sum it up for you…

When I first heard about the Nursing and Care Quality Forum (NCQF) I must admit that I felt quite pleased - I know I am probably in the minority here and maybe some might call me naive, but never the less I felt that anything that set out to improve nursing quality needed to be embraced. I was very pleased when @dgfoord suggested this as a discussion for NurChat but very surprised at the conversation that ensued…

This NurChat started off by asking what chatters first thoughts were on the NCQF.

@nursemaiden tweeted “Cynic that I am that it’s another forum”

@Ramck001 stated “It’s an inherent waste - I already know what it takes to be a good nurse”

Nurchatters were concerned that the money spent setting the NCQF forum up could be better spent elsewhere @nursemaiden stated “If you want high quality care you have to invest in staff including right numbers, valuing them, training and development”

@dbbstubbs tweeted “It’s again money spent aimlessly that could be better spent on primary care and training”

I asked NurChatters if compassion, dignity, respect and safety (the four key aims of the NCQF) truly exist in all healthcare environments?

Answers ranged @jackrussel33 stating “No way” to @PaulStudentMHN tweeting “All of the above can only happen if it is a natural quality of the nurse”

@dbbstubbs stated “It does exist but because the staff levels are so low you do the best you can with the resources you are given”

@JulieVuolo then asked “Does everyone feel we have the right people on the forum to keep it a forum for constructive debate?”

@Bartontd replied “Impressive membership - lets hope impressive outcomes”

@PhilipRABall tweeted “A couple of names are very familiar, we have to trust”

@dgfoord added “Looks good, but may I say the unsayable? Are there enough non-nurses with expertise in quality from outside healthcare?”

There were many other points raised and view expressed, they can all be read in the full chat transcript on the NurChat Blog, but as the chat drew to a close NurChat asked what participants thought the biggest challenges faced by the NCQF were?

Suggestions included - @PhilipRABall stated “Keeping cynics happy, engaging quiet 1s, giving patients what’s needed and not what the govt wants”

@JulieVuolo said “Proving that nurses can make this initiative work, sustaining the momentum, and not being dissolved by the next government”

@dhgfoord added “An aim of NCQF could be to become detached from the government, to remove political influence and embed in the NHS”

There is no doubt in my mind that the NCQF really do have their work cut of for them, all the best intentions in the world are not going to help if the nursing community do not believe in the work that they are doing. It initially surprised me that the NurChat participants felt that the NCQF was a waste of money and just another forum but as the chat progressed I certainly saw their point of view - does a forum really have any impact on the bedside? That may been the case but I do believe that whatever the political reasoning behind the NCQF it is down to each individual nurse by the bedside to make quality care happen.

@anniecoops tweeted “The NCQF are asking you all to tell them directly what you think who will respond?”

And who will respond? The more nurses who respond the better picture the NCQF will have and the more they will be able to support and us to make the changes needed to improve quality. We have an opportunity to impact on the quality of care and we should take it. The NCQF will at least have the chance to make an impact if we communicate our thoughts and then listen to their findings. The quality of nursing care is everyone’s responsibility and we should not just passively sit whilst a group of people try to make a difference.

Teresa Chinn heads up NurChat for Newcross Healthcare Solutions - Nurchat is a fortnightly twitter chat for nurses exploring differenttopicsthatvary enormously.Anyone can suggest a NurChat discussion subject simply by tweeting @NurChat or by visiting the NurChat blog.

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