Wednesday, 13 November 2013
Nursing shortage?.....what shortage?
This week saw the 'nursing trade union' The Royal College of Nursing announce that there were in the UK the NHS were in the region of 20,000 nurses short in order to provide a safe service.
Yet Cameron's health spokesperson glibly announced that his Government has done more to bring about improvement in health care & increase front line nursing numbers. This in practice is utter hogwash-take it from one who works in the 'front line' of nursing.
Although I retired from full time nursing in 2010 I continue to work twice weekly. I am employed by a health care temporary staffing organisation-run by & for the trust to supposedly supplement nursing staff shortfalls on/in 'front line units.
Sad though it doesn't work like that & I don't think that the public are being told how many of the nurses that care for them & their relatives are working part time, without full time contacts, without sick pay, without allocated annual leave entitlement-no work no pay & no holiday pay & are payed at below a grade that full time contracted staff are graded/payed at.
The trust has an apparent bottomless pit of nurses who they call in to plug the gaps, the temporary staffing organisation(s) send text messages throughout the day advising these nurses what vacancies they have for work either that day or in the long term.
Today (Wednesday) November 13th by 0956am I have received 9 text messages with requests for me to work. These text continue throughout the day, every day even when I'm actually working on the unit where I work!
The best or worse of this, is that the majority of these texts are requests offering me employment for 3 months or so. Therefore the recipient of the text is being offered a 'full time/part time job for 3 months, after which time the post is retexted again.
So what's' the problem?
It shows that NHS trusts throughout the UK have frozen recruitment. That trusts haven't the money to employ full time nurses. That patients do not have any contiguity of care, they see a new nurse looking after them each day with all the implications that this can bring about.
I won't bore you with all my argument why having different nurses each day/month/week on a unit is wrong & not beneficial to good nursing care I'll leave it to you to think about how you would feel if you or your nearest & dearest were a patient in that situation.
And the texts that I receive keep coming through.... I've just received 2 more offering work for 3 months only.
Who's to blame for this situation??