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Survey: State of NHS finances is biggest worry for nursing workforce

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Financial pressures are the biggest challenge facing nursing in the NHS at the moment, according to our latest annual survey.

The parlous state of NHS finances were chosen by 24% of the nearly 750 respondents as the biggest challenge.

Poor pay and staff recruitment and retention were identified by a further 19% each, short staffing in hospitals was chosen by 18% and short staffing in the community by 11%.

Only 5% chose winter pressures, despite recent warnings about the coming months from NHS leaders.

When asked about winter planning, 24% said they believed their organisation was prepared and it would be “business as usual”.

A further 22% thought it would be “touch and go”.

But 26% said their organisation would “struggle to provide a safe service all of the time” and 10% that they would be “unable to provide a safe service all of the time”.


1. What is the biggest challenge facing nursing in the NHS at the moment? 
Short staffing in the hospital sector   18.29%
Short staffing in the community sector11.04%
Staff recruitment and retention        18.62%
Poor pay   18.62%
Winter pressures    4.94%
Poor media portrayal  4.12%
NHS financial pressures  24.38%


2. Do you believe your organisation is prepared for the coming winter? 
Yes, it will be business as usual23.82%
Yes, but it will be touch and go  21.56%
No, we will struggle to provide a safe service all of the time        26.58%
No, we will be unable to provide a safe service all of the time    10.21%
Don’t know   9.40%
Not applicable  8.43%



NHS leaders have warned of a tough winter ahead




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