Leader comment: Truth from frontline nurses

Feedback from nurses at the frontline should be taken seriously.
Feedback from nurses at the frontline should be taken seriously.
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When a loved one, or indeed ourselves, are in hospital we should expect to get the best care possible.

However, whether from personal experience or from hearing the details of numerous reports from pressure groups or government bodies, we fear that this is not always the case.

The suspicion has always been that healthcare is “patchy” and a postcode lottery depending on where you live.

But now a Royal College of Nursing survey of more than 3,000 frontline nurses has revealed that half of nurses in Scotland believe patients’ care was at risk due to staff shortages on their most recent shift.

We must take note of the nurses’ voices and the warning bells they sound.

They are professionals who work round the clock seeing at first hand how staff resources are stretched, with many hospitals relying on agency and bank nurses, who may not always have the specific skills required.

The nurses surveyed are not scoring points or using the NHS as a political football.

We ignore them at our peril.