A recent survey, published in a new RCN report, revealed 30,000 nurses are too busy to relieve patient’s pain or give them their medication on time, due to mounting pressures within the NHS.

According to the survey, around 53% of nurses fear the quality of care is suffering. Staff shortages often mean nurses are left responsible to care for as many as 25 patients at one time, when official guidelines state nurses should only care for eight.

36% of nurses believe their lack of time means necessary tasks are often left undone, whilst a further 55% said frequently fewer nurses are on duty than planned. This adds to findings to suggest the NHS are running so short on nurses, wards are frequently left understaffed.

The RCN have said: “Such lapses in care matter because they heighten the risk of someone experiencing complications of their condition or suffering harm.”

A Department of Health spokesman said: “We are helping the NHS to make sure it has the right staff, in the right place, at the right time, to provide safe care. That’s why there are over 29,600 more professional qualified clinical staff, including over 11,300 more nurses, on our ward since May 2010.“

The spokesman also added, an extra 10,000 training places will be funded for nurses and allied healthcare professionals by 2020.

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