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Nursing poll reveals patient safety concerns

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Only 7% of nurses believe their organisation has the right number of staff to deliver good quality care to patients, according to the results of a snapshot survey revealed yesterday by the Royal College of Nursing.

The online survey of nearly 2,000 nurses found mounting pressure on NHS frontline staff, with respondents pointing to unfilled vacancies, recruitment freezes and the feeling that patient safety could be compromised.

An overwhelming majority, 83%, warned patient safety was being compromised by inadequate staffing levels on a “daily or weekly basis”.

RCN chief executive and general secretary Peter Carter said: “It is deeply worrying that some nurses are telling us that they do not have enough staff to deliver quality care and that safety could be compromised.

“What we are hearing is that there are fewer staff doing more work, and nurses themselves are saying it could have a damaging effect on patient care.”

He added: “It is vital that healthcare organisations prioritise and monitor their staffing levels – without this, safe care cannot be guaranteed.”


RCN survey:
80% said they did not have enough staff to deliver good quality care to patients
46% said their trust had vacancies that had been unfilled for more than six months
83% said patient safety was being compromised by inadequate staffing levels on a daily or weekly basis
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