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Nurses 'forced to ration care'

Hospital nurses are being forced to "ration care" because they don't have enough time to properly look after patients, a new study suggests. Fundamental aspects of care are "frequently being left undone", researchers found.

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Nurse care raises 'difficult questions' over staff cuts

There is a strong relationship between registered nurses staffing levels and the prevalence of care being left undone, authors from the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery and the University of Southampton said today after a new report suggested nurses wee having to "ration care".

The authors added:

Most nurses working on general medical and surgical wards in this representative sample reported that some care was left undone on their last shift.

Registered nurses (RNs) working in English NHS hospitals report that care is needed but is often not done because of insufficient time. [The] better the practice environment the smaller the volume of care that is left undone.

Our findings raise difficult questions for hospitals in a climate where many are looking to reduce - not increase - their expenditure on nurse staffing.

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