Exclusive: Understaffing and bureaucracy blocking nurse innovation
student nurse research
Most nurses have ideas for how to improve the service in which they work but less than one in five feel like their suggestions would be acted upon if they brought them forward, according to a survey by innovation charity Nesta and Nursing Times.
“The layers of hierarchy above nurses need to be genuinely open to the contribution that nurses can make”
The poll of more than 300 healthcare staff identified understaffing and bureaucracy as the main barriers stopping frontline innovation.
It found 88% of respondents had ideas on improving their service but only 24% felt the system had a culture of listening to ideas from the frontline, while just 17% felt it had a culture of acting upon them.
When staff were able to innovate, respondents noted improvements in the health or wellbeing of patients (43%), more efficient use of staff time (30%), better collaboration with other professionals or parts of the system (31%) and improved team wellbeing (27%).
In addition, 23% said the implementation of their idea had improved patient flow, 21% were able to give patients more control over their own health, and 18% said it helped cut down on admin.
However, the survey showed there were many barriers to frontline innovation. Top was understaffing with almost a third reporting rota gaps meant there was no time for them to try out new ideas. Meanwhile, 28% of respondents said bureaucratic processes got in the way.
Halima Khan, executive director of health, people and impact at Nesta, said: “The layers of hierarchy above nurses need to be genuinely open to the contribution that nurses can make and genuinely value their contribution.”
Sleeping patient waking ban suggested in new green paper
The government is considering introducing “protected sleep time” in English hospitals when nurses will be banned from waking patients unless clinically necessary. The proposal is among a range of measures to tackle preventative illness in England put forward in a green paper published in July.
Queensland nurse ratio legislation ‘saving lives and money’
The introduction of legislated nurse-to-patient ratios in Queensland, Australia, has prevented 145 patient deaths and saved the state government millions of dollars, analysis has found. Mandated minimum nurse staffing standards have been in place for selected wards and units since July 2016.
Exclusive: NMC considers using patient impact statements in FtP trials
court trial regulation law
The Nursing and Midwifery Council is exploring the use of “personal experience statements” to allow people to communicate the impact of substandard care on their life and wellbeing. The NMC said it was looking at how such statements could be used as part of its new fitness to practise approach.
Extra 4,000 mental health nurses needed for long-term plan
More than 4,000 additional mental health nurses will be needed over the next five years to meet the ambitions of the NHS Long Term Plan, according to the new NHS Mental Health Implementation Plan. It sets out a framework to deliver policy commitments made for mental health services.
CNO to enrol 14 trusts on global nursing excellence scheme
Nurse staffing shortage is ‘top priority’ for regulator
Source: Kate Stanworth
The chief nursing officer for England has announced plans to put 14 NHS trusts through an internationally-recognised programme that aims to create a positive working environment for nursing staff. Dr Ruth May said she wanted trusts to take part in the Pathway to Excellence scheme.
Wales sets out paediatric nurse ratios for planned law extension
Plans to expand safe nurse staffing legislation in Wales to cover paediatric inpatient care have taken a step forward. The Welsh government has issued interim guidance to help health boards prepare for future extension of the Nurse Staffing Levels (Wales) Act 2016.
Student nurse applications rising but still down 29% since bursary axe
ward sister charge nurse
Applications to study nursing in England have increased by 4% from last year but are still down more than 15,000 since the bursary was axed. Data from the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service shows 36,810 people signed up to study nursing by the final deadline of 30 June, up from 35,260 in 2018. But the numbers are still down 29% from 51,830 in 2016, the year the bursary was cut.
Florence Nightingale Foundation appoints new chief executive
The Florence Nightingale Foundation has announced Professor Greta Westwood as its new chief executive. Professor Westwood will take up the new post at the start of September and said she was looking forward to “create new and inspiring opportunities” for nurses and midwives.
Over 40% of emergency admissions from care homes ‘avoidable’
Generic elderly hand bed
More than four in 10 emergency admissions from care homes could be avoided, according to a new analysis that concludes more joint work between health services and care settings is key to tackling the problem.
Tackling ‘negative’ perception of NMC part of new draft vision
The Nursing and Midwifery Council has outlined its commitment to building a better relationship with registrants by speaking about the challenges they face that affect their ability to provide good care. It wants to show registrants it is not just there to punish them when things go wrong.
New asthma guidance places emphasis on preventing attacks
The focus group found children needed asthma advice before finishing year six
Nurses should assess all asthma patients for their risk of having an exacerbation, according to updated guidance on the management of the condition from the British Thoracic Society and Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network. It focuses on the need for a stronger focus on preventing asthma attacks.
Determined nursing director secures funds for 100 extra staff
A nursing director at a struggling NHS trust has convinced her board to invest more than £1m in boosting the nurse workforce, by stressing that it was the “responsible” thing to do. Juliette Cosgrove, director of nursing, midwifery and therapies at Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust, joined a year ago after a critical inspection report.
Nurse-led service wins praise at ‘outstanding’ community trust
Kent Community NHS Foundation Trust
Nurse-led services at a community health trust in Kent have been praised by inspectors who rated the organisation “outstanding”. Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust was previously rated “good” by the Care Quality Commission, but upgraded it to “outstanding” after a visit in May.
Former Casualty TV actress becomes real-life A&E nurse
An actress, known for her frequent portrayal of nursing roles on television, has become a real accident and emergency nurse. Actress Vickey Hall, 42, has become a staff nurse at Worcestershire Acute Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. Previously, she has starred in Coronation Street, Casualty, Holby City and Bodies.