Patients are dying alone because of lack of NHS staff – report says

A new report says that patients are dying in NHS due to lack of staff to take care of them. A study of over 30,000 nurses showed that many felt burnt out or felt stressed, with about a quarter pointing out that they had up to 14 or more patients to handle at a time.

Nurses said caring for patients appeared like spinning plates as they are left to die alone when there’s no family to help them. A nurse said the care given to patients is compromised because of lack of enough staff. Patients often have no one to sit with them at the end of life, making them die alone.

Another nurse said the inability to attend to a patient who’s dying is appalling to the soul. The report by Royal College of Nursing (RCN) foots on the UK nurses’ experience on the last shift. Over half of the nurses said there was a lowered number in planned staffing of some registered nurses during their last turn, while about 41% of shifts didn’t have some health support workers.

More lapses in the nursing sector

One out of five nurses on a particular shift is non-permanent agency staff; the report also stated that 36% of nurses said necessary patient care was left incomplete due to lack of time. That entailed staff’s inability to issue medication on time, having little or no time to make patients brush their teeth, manage pain and lack of time to give comfort and complete records.

For those who work in A&E, it observed one in ten nurses said the care they gave on their last shift was poor, and the figure escalated by 14%.

The RCN is advocating modified legislation to offer better staffing level in the UK. The chief executive, Janet Davies say when these professionals blow the whistle, something would be done. Davies added that the nursing shortage is hitting hard and deserves the attention of ministers.

The reports are a result of poor cost-cutting and planning over the years. There’s the need to assure that services are safe, and new laws on staffing should go in line.

According to the spokeswoman for the Department of Health, they are rendering help to NHS to ensure it has the right staff, doing the right thing at the right time regarding safe care. That’s why there are more than 29,600 qualified clinical staff who are professionals, with over 11,300 nurses on their wards right from May 2010.

The spokeswoman added that they have committed to fund extra 10,000 locations for nurses, allied health professionals, and midwives by 2020 to make sure the NHS possess the right staff it requires both now and in the time to come.