The National Health Service is currently consulting on possible changes to the law that could make it easier to bring in the ‘big ideas’ for the health service as set out in the NHS Long-term Plan.
But there is a huge gap in what is being suggested.
The gap is nurses — or rather the lack of them.
It is a gap that has become too big to ignore.
It is a gap that will severely compromise patient care.
And it is a gap that leaves existing nurses under intolerable pressure, unless it is addressed now and underpinned by legislation.
There are nearly 40,000 nursing posts in England that are unfilled.
This has happened, in our view, because the Government has not taken responsibility for ensuring that there are enough nurses.
This must change.
We are asking patients, their families and members of the general public to join our call for a change to the law to address the shortage of nurses in the NHS and to protect patient care.
Please tell the NHS what you think.
People can do this by simply completing our online consultation form at http://rcn.eaction.org.uk/NHS-consultation.
Regional Council member
Royal College of Nursing Northern