Nurses urge ministers to put patient care not cuts first

Patient care and not funding constraints must be crucial in health board decisions on workforce planning, according to RCN Scotland.

Yesterday the Scottish government debated emerging cuts to frontline services as a direct result of the SNP’s budget settlement.

NHS Shetland is reviewing the number of nurses, cancer care services and mental health funding. NHS Forth Valley says required savings ‘will impact on direct patient services and on staffing levels’.

Theresa Fyffe, director of RCN Scotland, said: ‘Nursing teams deliver the majority of direct patient care and are critical to the patient experience, whether this is in hospitals, care homes or the community.

‘Patients need nursing teams made up of nurses at the right grades with the appropriate skills to deliver quality and safe care.

‘Patient care, not financial constraints, must be at the heart of health board decisions on workforce planning and RCN Scotland calls on the Scottish government and health boards to ensure that this is the case.’

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