News

Tuesday 2 March 2010

Nurses and midwives ‘lifeblood of the NHS’

PM addresses members of the commission; Crown copyrightThe Prime Minister has welcomed a report setting out the way forward for the future of nurses and midwives.

Gordon Brown launched the Commission on the Future of Nursing and Midwifery in England a year ago.

He asked the Commission to advise him on how to build the future of health care, and give nurses and midwives a bigger say in service design and leadership as well as care delivery.

The Commission, made up of 20 leaders and experts in nursing and midwifery, presented their report to Government on 2 March.

The PM said:

“What we are doing today is planning a future in which nursing will be far more central to the development of healthcare, indeed, the development of social care in our country. We are recognising that people want a personal service. They do not want to be treated as a number, and they never have been by nurses.”

One of the key proposals is that ward sisters, charge nurses and equivalent team leaders be restored to their former traditional positions of authority as visible care champions.

The report also makes it clear that responsibility for high quality and compassionate care starts at the front line and goes right up to board level.

Ann Keen, Chair of the Commission, said that “nurses and midwives are the lifeblood of the NHS and have always been at the heart of good health care”.

The Government will respond to the report at a later date.

Previous story: Roundtable discusses future of nursing

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