Staffing Levels in the Welsh NHS

Back to all Motions

2016 Health Care Service Group Conference
18 December 2015

Conference notes the intention of the Welsh Government to pass legislation in relation to Nurse Staffing Levels in Wales. We welcome the intention of this legislation to ensure minimum staffing levels on hospital wards, which reflects the feedback we receive regularly from nursing members that staffing levels are often insufficient and unsafe.

We also note the developing trend towards more community-based services of increasing complexity (sometimes referred to as “hospital at home”) which demands that safe staffing levels be secured for all groups of staff in all clinical settings.

However, conference remains concerned that the proposed Welsh legislation will apply only to nurses, and only to in-patient wards. We believe that healthcare is best provided by the whole multi-disciplinary team, comprising not just doctors and nurses (as portrayed by the media) but many other groups of staff, including ancillary staff, admin and clerical staff, and Allied Health Professionals such as Occupational Therapists.

Conference notes that the campaign to establish minimum nurse staffing levels can sometimes be seen to have an adverse and unintended consequence for other staff groups.

Conference therefore calls on the HSGE to consider extending its safe staffing levels campaign to include all relevant staff groups and not just nursing.