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The big question: are nurses forced to ‘ration’ care owing to staffing shortages?


Latest nursing research has found that wards should have seven patients or fewer per registered nurse to avoid missing vital care.  

They found the number of patients per nurse on duty was significantly linked with the incidence of unfinished care by nurses, or “missed care”, and called for it to be used as an early warning for potential patient safety concerns and unnecessary deaths.

The study, by the National Nursing Research Unit at King’s College London, found more than eight out of 10 hospital nurses had to leave care undone on their last shift because of staffing shortages.

Can you relate to these findings?


Readers' comments (5)

  • Of course

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  • Yes.

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  • And if Management want to get rid of a nurse, because of this " unfinished care" they will then report them to the NMC for this crime, who is researching this?

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  • UNDIENIABILY!! This is exactly why our healthcare system is in the state it is in. As nurses, none of us wants to leave patients needs unattended, however we are being stretched beyond our ability with higher numbers of sicker patients than ever before!

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  • is the number of patients on the rise?
    is this due to immigration and or an increasing population, or greater complexity of cases, or increasing advances in technology offering more investigations and treatments, or only due to a reduction in the number of nurses with shortages in some areas or a combination of all of these?

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