Care home journey

Royal College of Nursing | September 2018 | Care home journey

A new online resource from the Royal College of Nursing has been designed to support nursing care in older peoples care homes.
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Care Home Journey comprises:

  • Pre-admission
  • Admission
  • Ongoing assessment / Care planning / Risk assessment
  • Short stay
  • Discharge
  • Fundamentals/ Essential care
  • Acute admission
  • Other transfer
  • End of life care

Access Care Home Journey from the RCN 


Learning disability care could return to ‘Victorian era’ because of nurse training cuts, experts warn

The Independent | August 2018 | Learning disability care could return to ‘Victorian era’ because of nurse training cuts, experts warn

A new article in The Independent highlights the shortage of specialist nurses, such as learning disability nurses who provide specialist care in the community and in some acute trusts.


Director of nursing, policy and practice at the Royal College of Nursing, Dame Donna Kinnair said: “The nursing shortage in England is harming some of the most vulnerable members of society.

“Those with learning disabilities already face a lower life expectancy and poorer health outcomes than the general population, and a lack of specialist knowledge will make matters worse.

Read the full news story at  The Independent 

How nurses can improve care for people with severe mental illness

Young, N. | 2018 | How nurses can improve care for people with severe mental illness| Nursing Times  [online] |114| 9| P. 34-36.

A new review  published in the Nursing Times considers how nurses can better support people with severe mental illness (via Nursing Times). 


Severe mental illness is associated with reduced life expectancy and poor physical health. Early detection and intervention increases the likelihood of improved health and social outcomes, but people experiencing their first episode of psychosis often experience delays in accessing treatment. This article summarises a review of studies funded by the National Institute for Health Research that investigates support for people with severe mental illness, and highlights how nurses working in acute, primary care and community settings can improve patients’ access to effective support and care.

The article is available to Rotherham NHS staff to request here 


Long shift patterns lead to higher sickness absence risk for hospital-based Registered Nurses and Healthcare Assistants, finds study

University of Southampton |July 2018 | Long shift patterns lead to higher sickness absence risk for hospital-based Registered Nurses and Healthcare Assistants

A longitudinal study that looked at shift patterns is the first of its kind to examine and demonstrate the impact on nurses’ sickness rates. The researchers from the University of  Southampton, The University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, and Libera Università Maria Ss Assunta, Italy, collected and analysed data during a three-year period, which covered 600,000 shifts worked by 1,944 staff members across 32 general inpatient wards at an acute hospital in England.

They found a little over 38,000 shifts lost due to sickness absence corresponding to 8,090 distinct episodes.

Dr Chiara Dall’ Ora, co-author of the study  said:  “While occasional shifts of 12 hours or more (less than 25%) in the past 7 days were not significantly associated with more sickness absence, when staff worked a higher proportion of shifts of 12 hours or more, sickness rates increased, with the highest odds for those working more than three quarters of their shifts as 12 hours or more shifts.”

Professor Peter Griffiths, a co-author on the paper and Chair of Health Services Research at the University of Southampton, added: “Working more long shifts was associated with both long and short-term sickness. As well as being bad for employees, such increases in sickness rates are likely to be costly and may undermine a key motivation for introducing the 12-hour shift pattern – organisational efficiency.”


Source: University of Southampton

The research findings have now been published in the Journal of Nursing Management 

Dall’Ora C, Ball J, Redfern O, Recio-Saucedo A, Maruotti A, Meredith P &Griffiths P.| 2018| Are long nursing shifts on hospital wards associated with sickness absence? A longitudinal retrospective observational study|Journal of Nursing Management |Epub ahead of print]e|doi: 10.1111/jonm.12643.




To investigate whether working 12 hr shifts is associated with increased sickness absence among registered nurses and health care assistants.


Previous studies reported negative impacts on nurses’ 12 hr shifts; however, these studies used cross-sectional techniques and subjective nurse-reported data.


A retrospective longitudinal study using routinely collected data across 32 general inpatient wards at an acute hospital in England. We used generalized linear mixed models to explore the association between shift patterns and the subsequent occurrence of short (less than 7 days) or long-term (more than or equal to 7 days) sickness absence.


We analysed 601,282 shifts and 8,090 distinct episodes of sickness absence. When more than 75% of shifts worked in the past 7 days were 12 hr in length, the odds of both a short-term and long-term sickness episode were increased compared with working none.


Working long shifts on hospital wards is associated with a higher risk of sickness absence for registered nurses and health care assistants.


The higher sickness absence rates associated with long shifts could result in additional costs or loss of productivity for hospitals. The routine implementation of long shifts should be avoided.



Introduction of a nurse supplied medication programme at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust

NHS Improvement |July 2018 |Introduction of a nurse supplied medication programme at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust

A new case study from NHS England has looked at the introduction of a nurse supplied medication programme at Nottingham University Hospitals Trust.

The full case study is available to read at NHS England 

Government response to ‘The nursing workforce’ report from the Health and Social Care Select Committee

Department of Health and Social Care | July 2018 |Government response to ‘The nursing workforce’ report from the Health and Social Care Select Committee 

The Department of Health and Social Care have published a new policy paper, it is the government’s response to the House of Commons Health and Social Care Select Committee’s second report of session 2017 to 2019.

The government’s response to ‘The nursing workforce’ report sets out how the government is working with its arm’s length bodies to make sure the NHS continues to have the nursing workforce it needs, for patient and public benefit.


The Department emphasises  that the latest figures estimate around 36,000 nursing roles were not filled by a substantive member of staff, of which around 33,000 were being filled by agency or bank staff. We also recognise the importance of transparent, robust supply and demand projections which include demographic and other demand factors alongside considerations of affordability, as well as the requirement to account for nurses working in the NHS, adult social care, primary care and other settings. (Source:Department of Health and Social Care).

The paper can be read here 


The nursing workforce report 

Tackling the nursing shortage

The Open University | May 2018 | The Open University: Tackling the nursing shortage

Tackling the nursing shortage, the  new publication from The Open University considers the financial impact of temporary staffing to address the shortage, which the report describes this as “an expensive, short-term approach to plugging the gaps – [as] it costs the NHS nearly £1.5 billion a year.”  It also outlines many of the factors driving the shortage, suggesting that new routes into the profession, like apprenticeships, can help to plug the gap and future-proof the nursing workforce in the long-term (Open University).

The Open University
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Using data obtained by The Open University under the Freedom of Information Act, the report calculates that if the hours  currently worked by temporary staff were instead covered by permanent nurses, the NHS could save as much as £560 million a year. This funding could otherwise be used to pay for continuing professional development or improved services.  

The report can be downloaded from The Open University 

In the media:

The Telegraph Nurse shortages cost the NHS up to £2.4 billion last year

The Independent NHS spending £1.5bn a year on temporary nurses as staff leave in droves, study reveals