Health workers have made more than 10,000 complaints about staffing in the Welsh NHS
Welsh Liberal Democrats say 10,395 complaints about NHS staffing have been logged by staff themselves since 2012
More than 10,000 complaints about a lack of qualified staff have been made by NHS workers in Wales, the Welsh Liberal Democrats claim.
Statistics for six health boards – Abertawe Bro Morgannwg, Aneurin Bevan, Betsi Cadwaladr, Cardiff and Vale, Cwm Taf and Hywel Dda – reveal that since 2012 there have been 10,395 complaints about staffing levels.
Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Kirsty Williams, whose draft Safe Nurse Staffing Levels Bill is currently going through the Welsh assembly, said: ‘To have this volume of complaints about the lack of staff available to truly staggering.’
Ms Williams’ bill has been drawn up to ensure health providers maintain safe nurse-to-patient ratios at all times and improve working conditions for nursing staff.
‘The bill would see Wales become the first country in the UK with a legal duty on safe nurse staffing levels. It will save lives by ensuring a safe level of nurse staffing in our hospitals,’ she said.
RCN Wales director Tina Donnelly said: ‘It is immensely disturbing such high numbers of complaints have been raised by NHS staff in a relatively short period of time.
‘Inadequate staffing results is an increased risk to patients and staff. We must address the reasons behind insufficient staffing levels if we are to secure a safer care environment for the patients of the NHS.'
A Welsh Government spokesperson said: 'We are determined to help our NHS get nurse staffing levels right. That is why since 2012 the principle of one registered nurse to every seven patients during the day on adult medical and surgical wards has been in place.
'Ninety-three per cent of hospital wards now meet our nurse-to-patient ratio and we are confident all Welsh boards will soon achieve this.'