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NHS watchdog warns over nurse-patient ratios

The organisation which sets NHS standards - National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) - has said that nurses in hospitals should not have to look after more than eight patients each at any one time.

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Nice: Nurses need to be alert for 'red flag events'

Nice's deputy chief executive, Professor Gillian Leng is expected to say that hospitals should not see Nice's new recommended 1:8 ratio as a limitation, but that not doing so would overload nurses and risk harming patients.

Nice says nurses need to be alert for 'red flag events'. Credit: Patrick Seeger/DPA/Press Association Images

Leng will also tell hospitals that nurses need to be constantly on the alert for "red flag events", such as patients not receiving help to go to the bathroom or not receiving pain medication, which can trigger an immediate need for more nurses on the wards.

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