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The big question: Why are we facing a nursing shortage?


At least a third of hospital trusts in England have turned to actively recruiting nurses from overseas as they struggle to keep wards adequately staffed, an investigation by Nursing Times has found.

Workforce experts say the findings are proof of the start of a new NHS registered nurse shortage, which has led some trusts to recruit dozens of nurses from across Europe and further afield.

Of the 105 acute trusts that responded to a Freedom of Information request by Nursing Times, 40 had actively recruited nurses from overseas in the last 12 months – leading to more than 1,360 nurses coming to work in England.


What do you think? Your response could be published in next week’s Nursing Times.


Readers' comments (5)

  • michael stone

    I'm sure this could be 'answered scientifically by analysing 'everything'' so my answer here is probably wrong: but as a 'casual observer', I would hazard that perhaps 'repeatedly knocking nurses [media, goverment' etc]', 'reducing staffing numbers until the nurses who are left are pretty-much permanently knackered and totally ran-off-their-feet[and cannot provide the type of care many would like to, and joined nursing in order to]', and trying to pay them less, might all be factors in this ?

    'Often more paperwork than actual nursing' might be in there, as well.

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  • Put it simply :

    You have bullied and tormented nurses out of their jobs. Made up nonsense about their standards of care, to justify the unsupportable actions which have been taken against skilled and highly qualified nurses. All in the blind attempt to save money and " reach covert targets of Staff disposal" with no thought for the future - theirs or the care of patients.

    I would have been happy to work on to 60 or even 65, but Management( mostly Nurses)made sure I couldn't and wouldn't. Why , were they jealous that I was better educated & more highly skilled than they were?( I am).

    Like post Tomlinson, when you get rid of so many nurses, they vanish to do other things more rewarding than continually getting kicked in the teeth by everyone; and then there is a shortage of Nurses. There was Post the Tomlinson fall out, and the same has happened now.

    Doesn't anyone learn from history?

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  • Could not have put it more succinctly that this. Bullied, pressured into accepting poor standards with that oold chestnut of 'can't you cope nurse?' I could go on.....

    Where does it stop?

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  • ...or you should plan your work better when you are on your own with one cardiac arrest and trying to get the crash team and start rescuss., as well as seeing to a patient who tried to get out of bed alone to go to the loo and ripped out their central cath and is pissing blood all over the bed and floor and is not steady on their feet, the phone rings from A&E to announce an admission and the manager just happens to drop by when a patient who wails they have been abandoned on a bed pan and have been ringing their bell for the last ten minutes or more and you feel bad because they are thin and bony with very fragile skin, and you failed to pick up the sheet from a bed you had just finished changing before all this pandemonium began, oh and there is another bedpan waiting in the sluice because the bedpan washer was full when the crash team arrives and requires your further assistance. Really nurse, you must learn to cope better!

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  • simply the inability of the NHS to workforce plan......together with nurses getting fed up to the back teeth of being s**t on by management!

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