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The Unpaid Over-worked "Angels"

The NHS in Scotland is close to breaking point, with most nurses claiming they are forced to work overtime to meet patient needs, a new report has found. A majority of nurses say patient care is suffering because of the pressure they are under, according to a staff survey by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN). Nurses are going unpaid for the extra hours they work because this was not agreed in advance, the report reveals, and time back in lieu cannot be taken because this would leave colleagues even more short staffed.

Nearly 2,000 nursing posts have been axed in Scotland in recent years. The survey finds that 54 per cent of nurses are working beyond their contracted hours each week in order to meet demands, with 58 per cent saying they are under too much pressure. More than half (55 per cent) say they are not providing the level of care they want to as the pressure builds. Only 38.1 per cent in Scotland say they would choose nursing as a career if they had to do it all again.

Norman…

Nursing the figures

It’s estimated 5000 NHS workers, including around 2500 nurses, have lost their jobs in the last three years. NHS chiefs spent £94million on temporary nursing staff last year – to fill the gaps left after they axed the 2500 nurses. The cost of using supply and agency nurses in Scottish hospitals soared by £4million compared to 2010, a report has revealed. And the number of staff hours taken up by temporary nurses rose by 1.5million to 6.3million.

Ellen Hudson, of the Royal College of Nursing Scotland, said: “It is vital that bank nursing is available to cover shortages when staff are off sick.However, the bank should not be used to cover long-term vacancies caused by recruitment freezes as it would be much better for patients if they’re filled with permanent staff.”

The RCN said the small increase in the number of nursing and midwifery staff was largely accounted for by the inclusion of nursing and midwifery “interns” in the workforce figures. The internship scheme is available to newl…

The old neglected again

Older patients are “not safe” on hospital wards in Scotland because of a lack of qualified nurses to care for them according to Royal College of Nursing (RCN) findings. The report suggests there is just one nurse caring for nearly ten patients on old people’s wards. A survey of almost 1,700 nurses found that 78 per cent said comforting and talking to patients was not done or done inadequately on their last shift because of low staff numbers. Some 59 per cent said promoting mobility and self-care was left undone or unfinished, with 34 per cent saying they could not provide patients with food and drink, and 33 per cent claiming they were unable to fully help patients to the toilet or manage incontinence.

The RCN warned there was a danger that “care becomes compromised” and said that many nurses say “they are too busy to provide the standard of care they would like”. The report said: “Older people in Scotland are being let down by a lack of professionally qualified nurses in hospitals, de…

health and safety??

Hospital chiefs are discouraging “whistleblowing” nurses from reporting their concerns about patient safety and staffing levels, nursing leaders have warned. More than one-third of nurses in Scotland (37%) said they had been discouraged, or told directly, not to report their concerns to their NHS health board or employer.

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) revealed more than 80% of nurses in Scotland said they had highlighted problems. But, in more than half of cases, no action was ever taken. The overwhelming majority (84%) of nurses in Scotland fear they will be victimised if they speak out about the problems.

Theresa Fyffe, RCN Scotland director, said: “It is extremely worrying that nurses are being explicitly told not to raise concerns, particularly after all we have learned about the consequences of ignoring issues around patient safety. The survey clearly shows nurses are committed to improving care for patients, but more than half, 55%, say no action was ever taken when they rais…

Over-worked

Nurses are "propping up" the NHS by repeatedly working more hours than contracted and providing last-minute shift cover, a union has claimed.

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Scotland said a survey of its members found just only one in 10.

96% reported working in excess of their contracted hours, with 27% saying they did this every shift.

More than a quarter said they provided last-minute cover for absentee staff at least fortnightly.

29% of nurses said they missed their meal time at work at least three times a week.

One in six said they rarely or never took the breaks they were entitled to.

One in five nurses said that in the past six months they had spent a week or more at work despite feeling too ill to be there.

Let hear it for the lazy workers once again!!!


The caring unpaid over-worked angels

Nurses are "propping up" the health service by consistently working over their contracted hours and providing last-minute shift cover.

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Scotlandfound just one in 10 nurses feel they have good staffing levels where they work. 96% of nurses reported working in excess of their contracted hours, with a quarter saying they did so every shift. One in six said they rarely or never took the breaks to which they were entitled. 29% said they missed their meal time at work at least three times a week. One in five nurses said that in the last six months they had spent a week or more at work despite feeling too ill to be there. Another 29% said they provided last-minute cover for absentee staff at least on a fortnightly basis.

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Scotland said there were "serious concerns" for patient care in the NHS

Malnourished old folk

A major survey is to try to establish how many people are malnourished when they enter hospitals and care homes. The three-day investigation by nutrition charity Bapen - assessing more than 500 institutions across the UK .

Based on studies carried out 10 years ago, an estimated 30% of patients in hospitals and care homes are clinically malnourished - a total of 3m people.

Charities such as Age Concern complain malnutrition remains prevalent .

As many as 10% of people aged over 65 are malnourished. That figure rises to 60% when it comes to elderly people in hospital.

"Weight loss and poor nutritional state is not a normal part of aging. And if it's happening we ought to address it and treat it." - The director of nutrition at King's College hospital , Rick Wilson said

What a world this is

Nearly a third of newly qualified nurses had not found a job six months after qualifying, figures show. And over half of physiotherapist graduates were unemployed, along with one in five midwives, according to a government census in March 2007.

9,000 nurses qualified between May and September 2006, but only 69% were employed six months later, meaning nearly 3,000 were unemployed.

Dr Peter Carter of the Royal College of Nursing, said: "I am hearing worrying stories from recently qualified nurses who are unable to get jobs because trusts are freezing entry level posts to save money...it is a waste of new and much needed nursing talent."

Meanwhile,

A group of stressed-out people in Spain have been given a chance to let off steam by demolishing a hotel in Madrid. The 30 winners of a contest were given sledgehammers to smash up the bedrooms and bathrooms of the 146-room hotel in the capital. The participants were selected by psychologists from more than 200 stressed applicants.

And o…