NHS cash shortage ‘harmful’ to care standards
Posted: February 9, 2014
Posted in: Medical Negligence
Figures released last week have highlighted that the cash shortage within the NHS is potentially harmful to care standards. Following the Stafford Hospital scandal last year, the NHS has been pushing to improve the level of care provided by the UK’s hospitals. Experts, however, say that financial pressures will make this exceedingly difficult.
Inquiry chair Robert Francis QC said that it is unacceptable for hospital leaders to act like they can continue to improve the level of care without adequate funding. He said that hospital leaders have to be “frank” about the level of care that they can provide.
Mr Francis made this statement in response to a report produced by the Nuffield Trust, which comprised interrogative interviews with around 50 members of staff from 5 different hospitals, as well as online feedback from chairs and executives. A common problem was recognised in the fact that staff were trying to improve care, but were unable to due to the state of the finances.
“Only a start”
The report was published over a year ago, the response to which Mr Francis was very pleased with. He said: “The strong message sent out to the health service by government was that important and fundamental change was required”. He added that the report was “only a start”, and that the implementation of improvement is the next stage.
It has been recognised, however, that priorities are already starting to shift, with “new inspections, more nurses and a stronger voice for patients” becoming more prominent.
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