Nurses overstretched

I AM writing as a Cambridgeshire nurse in response to the article about the surgeon who died at Papworth Hospital, about whom the family had several complaints regarding his care (Hunts Post, April 12). They are right to complain, as the issues they rais

I AM writing as a Cambridgeshire nurse in response to the article about the surgeon who died at Papworth Hospital, about whom the family had several complaints regarding his care (Hunts Post, April 12).

They are right to complain, as the issues they raise are not acceptable; although it is hard to judge without knowing the full story. However, I do not think the issue is with those particular nurses at that particular hospital. It seems to be a nationwide one.

The NHS is in a very grave situation at present. Before the recent issues with funding for hospitals and PCTs were made known to us all, the wards were stretched to the limit, with staff stressed, resources low, and more and more strains being put on them.

In today's world we expect the best, we want high standards. We know how to do it, nurses know what is the best care, we have the research to prove it. But in the current health service, it cannot be possible.

When you have been working all the hours God sends in a busy, stressful ward, where the patients all demand the best of you, and then your staff phone in sick for the next shift, how are you supposed to give the best care? How are you supposed to do everything for everyone?

And now they are making staff redundant. Nursing staff are being laid off to save money. That is ludicrous. I'm sorry for the family of the surgeon who died, as with all families who suffer loss. But I'm afraid we are only going to see more of this.

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There will be more fatalities, and sickness, and problems with care given. But it is not the fault of the staff on that day. It is the fault of the NHS. It is a nationwide funding and management issue. So let's not put blame where it should not be. Look at the big picture instead.

I believe this is the beginning of the end of the NHS. I firmly believe the only way forward is private healthcare, especially if we want high standards.

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