British Nurses Must Get Back to Basics

NursingJuly 31, 2013

Hospitals need a strong cadre of highly trained nurses in order to provide patients with the highest quality medical care. In Great Britain, that means going back to basics. Health officials there have decided that all nurses wishing to continue their in-hospital work must spend up to a year helping patients eat, wash and get dressed – work usually done by healthcare assistants. They see the new regulation as an essential step toward ensuring that nurses rediscover the values of compassionate care, do not become too detached from the fundamentals of patient care, and that they experience more routine contact with patients. “Frontline, hands-on caring experience and values need to be equal with academic training. These measures are about recruiting staff with the right values and giving them the training they need to do their job properly, so that patients are treated with compassion,” British Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt believes. The new nursing procedures will operate as a pilot program before being made routine throughout Great Britain. If successful, health ministers may consider making other health professionals, with the exception of physicians, undergo the same sort of basic training. Officials say this basic training process likely will be published in new minimum training standards and code of conduct for support workers in health and social care to ensure patients receive the best care possible. Although not outlined as a training requirement here, U.S. nursing standards also are kept purposely high to ensure quality care. Nurses are expected to remain current with new nursing practices and techniques, while maintaining a positive attitude and behavior toward every patient, which is why it takes a special person to be a nurse. Are you that kind of person? If so, check out to learn more about how to prepare for a new career in nursing.