Monday, 11 May 2009

NHS bosses 'ignore whistleblowers'

Whistleblowing nurses who raise concerns about patient safety are being ignored by NHS managers, union leaders have warned.

More than one in five (21%) have also been told by their superiors not to report concerns in their workplace or have been discouraged from doing so, according to the Royal College of Nursing (RCN). Speaking on the first day of its annual conference in Harrogate, RCN general secretary Dr Peter Carter said nurses feared being "victimised" if they spoke up.

One nurse told how she had been marginalised for raising fears over patient safety and for failing to "go with the flow" in her NHS trust.

A survey of 5,428 nurses for the RCN found that 99% understood it was their professional responsibility to raise concerns yet only 43% would be confident to report them without thinking twice.

Almost eight in 10 (78%) said they feared being victimised or seeing a negative effect on their career if they spoke out about poor practices on patient safety... fewer than one in three (29%) nurses said their employer had taken immediate action to resolve the situation while 35% said no action was ever taken.
Source: The Metro

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