It’s “not surprising that staff moral is NHS managers biggest concern”, the chief of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) said in light of a new financial report.
The latest quarterly monitoring report from think-tank The King’s Fund showed that staff morale continues to be the top concern of trust finance directors, and more than a quarter (27%) of them say the agency spending cap will affect their ability to ensure safe staffing levels.
Janet Davies, chief executive and general secretary of the RCN responded: “This report emphasises the gap between the rhetoric of integrating health and social care and the reality.
“It is no surprise to see that managers are once again reporting staff morale as their biggest concern. At a time when trusts are struggling to recruit enough staff to provide safe care, the last thing they need is to lose the experienced staff they already have because of plummeting morale,” she added.
If the NHS is to survive in the long term it needs a better long-term workforce strategy, Davies suggested.
She also said that the cuts to social care budgets are a “false economy as patients who could be better and more comfortably treated elsewhere end up in hospitals.”
Commenting on the report, John Appleby, chief economist at The King’s Fund, said: “There is now clear evidence that cuts to social care budgets are affecting the NHS, as well as reducing services for people that need them. The government must use the Spending Review to protect the social care system from further cuts and reinvest the £6 billion previously earmarked to implement the Dilnot reforms.”