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Posted about 5 years ago
I sometimes wonder if I simplify things too much. When people complain about the care (or lack of care) they receive while in the care of the British health system, I come up with an easy solution. I compare the health system I trained and worked with in New Zealand, to the conditions I usually find myself part of in a typical British ward.
I NZ we have five patients, six at most, per Registered Nurse, whereas in a busy surgical ward in Britain I've have often 12, sometimes fifteen patients, with a student nurse, or nurse aide to help out.
Fortunately British nurses are superb task managers as they can give all the oral medications, then all the intravenous meds, replace IV fluids and maintain them safely. They can also monitor all urnine outputs, make sure no one is consitpated, wash everyone who can't do so for themselves, change the beds, dress wounds, admit any acute admissions, plan discharges, turn bed bound patients every half hour/hour, monitor, observe closely any post-op patients, all the while keeping an eye our for any patients not conforming and becoming more ill instead of better.
But I'm merely a simple nurse and my solution is to employ more nurses. But I'm not clever like management as they keep on finding ways to cut staff and keep them at a minimum to save money, to stay in budget.
With all the money they save they will have extra money to pay for all the Agency nurses working at double the money, plus the extra 300% which the Agecny itself earns.
They will have spare money to pay for the complications patients receive from substandard care. then there are the law suits, the increased staff sick leave due to stress. More money to spend on infection control as it spirals out of contaol. More money to spend on patients who are spending longer inhospital. More money to spend training new staff asa everyone with any experience and sense has left for greener pastures.
The list is endless, but I'm just an Agency nurse earning my 30 pound an hour for 11 hours paid work. Although maybe I should start my own agency as they Agency I work work takes another 60 pound on top of what they pay me. That's 1000 pound a day per employee. (I do work night shifts in the ER I should add)
The hospital I work at the most in London is run by fellow Kiwis and Austrailians, all working for the same Agency. We usually outnumber the regular hospital staff. That's 1000 pound a day per nurse, that's a lot of money to be paying out.
There must be more to this management business than meets the eye. I'm just not clever enough to be a manager.