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Tories say commission's pledge is an 'insult' to nurses


The Conservatives have described as an “insult”, the inclusion of a pledge for nurses to take in the report of the Prime Minister’s Commission on the Future of Nursing and Midwifery, which was published today.

Shadow health minister Anne Milton said: “The idea of a pledge will be seen as an insult to all good nurses. In areas where standards are poor it is naïve to believe it will make any difference to improving care.”

Ms Milton also criticised the review for missing “obvious” ways to improve nursing.

“For example there is no mention of reducing the targets that contributed to the tragedy of mid-Staffordshire nor is there any mention of reducing the unnecessary paperwork that keeps nurses away from their patients,” she said.  “If we are going to strengthen the role of the charge nurse and wards sister the Government need to free them up to take control of their wards.”

Patients Association Director Katherine Murphy welcomed the pledge, but said: “It’s a sad indictment that there is a need to restate the commitment of nurses and midwives, the caring profession, to high quality patient care.

“Patients expect compassion from all healthcare professionals, but rightly or wrongly, especially from nurses. And whilst the pledge is a good first step, ensuring every nurse and midwife lives up to it, and more importantly is allowed to live up to it, is the only outcome patients are interested in”.


Readers' comments (16)

  • Not one of the corrupt, amateurish, disingenuous collection of spivs and shysters which call themselves Honourable Members should offer advice to Nurses working in an underfunded, understaffed service.

    Come on MPs, clean up your own act, repay the public funds stolen, pledge never to do it again, do a fair and honest days work and if you survive the effort then perhaps you can be permitted io tell real professionals how to perform at work.

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  • Well said Roger

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  • Hear hear Roger!

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  • completely agree roger!

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  • Roll on the general election when we can get rid of the charlatans that presently run the country. A new daft law is passed every day and this latest stupidity tops it all. As if nurses did not go into the profession because they care about people and their well being. We have learnt from politicians that you can say one thing and do the opposite the next day. Cut the pen pushing madness and allow nurses to nurse .

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  • Charlotte Peters Rock

    From personal experience, Nurses need to pledge that they will act in a professional manner and guard the safety of their patients, especially when they are sent into the home of supposedly dying patients. And then they need to act professionally - and keep the pledge.

    Had nurses (and a swathe of senior Nursing Sisters) actually taken responsibility for their own actions, my father, Ralph Winstanley, would probably still have been alive. (google: ralphwinstanleyofwath)

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  • Never thought I'd do this but I agree fully with the Tory point of view.
    To Gordon and the RCN....shove your pledge

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  • The only Pledge I shall be taking will be linked with the duster it goes with!

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  • Well said Roger 2-March 2010--9:32, except to say that it was not only MPs who agreed to this insulting proposal. Yes nurses and midwives represented us on the comission
    To Charolotte 3-March- 2010-11:29, I am sorry to hear about the maltreatment that your late father received. Too many people UK wide are suffering similar experiences, and it is not acceptable. However, signing a pledge will not resolve that malpractice. The NMC Code of Conduct already exists to protect the public,and obviously it is not working.
    The solution is effective nurse management and leadership; and that is what we do not have.

    Until frontline nurses are courageous enough to support each other and speak out, we will get more of the same and that is not good enough.

    A good starting point would be mass refusal to the subservient signing of this insulting pledge.
    I will not sign

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  • Maybe Ms Milton has been reading this blog!!

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