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COVID-19: More than Half of Nurses in the UK want to Quit - Nursing News - Nursearena Forum

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COVID-19: More than Half of Nurses in the UK want to Quit by Prettymide: Thu Jan 2022 07:35pm
The Royal College of Nursing surveyed nearly 10,000 nurses about their working conditions in October last year. NHS hospital nurses reported the highest intention to leave, with 60.2 per cent saying they want out

The "intolerable" struggles of UK nurses during the pandemic have been revealed in a new bombshell report - which suggests more than half of them are considering leaving their jobs.



The survey, compiled by the Royal College of Nursing, includes the damning testimonies of several nurses along with shocking figures which suggest widespread dissatisfaction in the profession.

One such figure suggests that over half of the nurses surveyed (56.8%) are planning or considering leaving their current post.

Nursing staff in NHS hospital settings reported the strongest intention to leave, with 60.2 per cent saying they want to quit.

Feeling undervalued and under too much pressure were the main reasons given for wanting to move jobs, according to the report.

As the Omicron variant started to surge through the UK population before Christmas, a similar report from Unison claimed that burnt-out NHS staff could quit in droves as the virus piled pressure on hospitals.

The UK's largest trade union surveyed 10,000 health workers - 51 per cent of whom claimed to be taking on more shifts to cover gaps in the rota amid nationwide staff shortages.

One of the most shocking statistics from that report echoed the RCN survey, with 57 per cent of medics saying they were thinking of quitting and that 54 per cent were already looking for alternative employment.

And in an exclusive report published today, The Mirror spoke with worn down frontline staff who said they were struggling to cope in "war-zone" hospitals.

In his introduction of the RCN report, the union's General Secretary and Chief Executive Pat Cullen, claimed the majority of nurses are "working when it is detrimental to their health and well-being".

Three in four of the respondents claim to be "regularly working beyond their shifts, most often unpaid", he adds. These extra hours are on top of the "standard" 12-hour shifts most nurse clock in to several times a week.

One nurse wrote of the situation: “I am fed up, exhausted and work is impacting on me personally.


"I’ve had enough of the impact on my family and myself. I won’t do it any longer.

"The government needs to value the profession before it’s too late. It possibly is already.

"Would I recommend nursing as a career? I would have for years but I always tell people who ask now to think very carefully."

The RCN report - which was surveyed in October 2021 and included answers from nearly 10,000 nurses - found that one in six (15.8%) were working at a higher or lower responsibility to the job they were hired for.

It claims "three quarters of all respondents (74.1%) report regularly working beyond their contracted hours at least once a week and 17.4% report doing so every shift or working day".

Meanwhile, nursing staff are being forced to rely on overtime or bank (short-notice) work to "cope financially".

But the majority of additional hours are not paid and rely on the "commitment and goodwill of staff to cover shortages".

The intensity of the additional hours is shocking when considering that one in six nurses say they work seven hours in addition to their contract hours at least several times a week or on every working day.

It comes as 24 NHS trusts declared major incidents and unions warned of a "perfect storm" of soaring staff absences and a huge rise in Covid patients.

Exhausted ambulance crews are overstretched, with some patients waiting 24 hours for a vehicle.

One union boss said: "We are nearly at breaking point. We are heading for the perfect storm. All the hospitals are full and we are seeing huge call volumes."

One in 15 people in England now has the disease, according to the latest official research – up from one in 25 the previous week.

Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: “Hospitals who have declared critical incidents are essentially reaching out to staff who are on leave, on rest days or even recently retired and asking them to come back. So the situation is desperate.”

Source: Mirror

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