NHS 111 Crisis Deepens

NHS 111 Crisis Deepens

According to various reports in the national media patient safety is being compromised by insufficient numbers of trained staff working on the NHS 111 call line.
The Daily Mail Online yesterday reported that two reviews which are due to feedback to NHS officials in the Autumn are likely to recommend that the system employs higher numbers of nurses. Sources say that the call centre lines have on occasion been answered by people with as little as two weeks training and that the NHS has now finally acknowledged that staffing levels and training need to be urgently addressed.
The NHS 111 system has been blighted with controversy since its launch earlier this year. There have been several reports in the media of inappropriate ambulance calls outs for such ailments as period pain and hangovers. This means that ambulances and staff are being tied up with trivial non-life threatening calls outs rather than getting to those who are critically ill and genuinely require urgent medical care.
The 111 call line is currently being reviewed by NHS official and the NHS’s medical director Sir Bruce Keogh. Reports are due back in September.
Nurses Care is Rationed Due to Pressure on Resources
A recent study carried out by King’s college London and reported in the national media highlights the time pressures faced by NHS nurses.
According to researchers eight out of ten nurses have to ‘ration’ care because they are too pressured for time. Those patients on wards with fewer nurses are likely to miss out on nursing care such as comforting a patient or talking to them.
The shocking research reveals that on average nurses are unable to complete 3 of the 13 basic nursing care activities that make up the NHS ideal full patient care.
Speaking to the Daily Mail online Dr Peter Carter chief executive of the Royal College of Nursing said:
‘These are depressing findings and unfortunately not surprising. When nurses are overloaded with tasks and have extremely limited time to complete them something has to give. Without enough staff on the ground it’s vital care such as having the time to talk with and reassure patients that suffers.’

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