Progress takes a lot of pushing

Despite the pace of healthcare progress, it seems that some things never change.

Despite the pace of healthcare progress, it seems that some things never change.

The Bliss Baby Report 2015 shows there remains a severe shortage of neonatal nurses in England. The birth rate has increased but neonatal services have not, while about 10% of newborns will need some form of neonatal care (Bliss 2015).

It has been six years since the NHS neonatal toolkit was produced, but units are still failing to meet national standards on safe staffing levels for premature and sick babies. The reason why is clear: staffing standards and guidelines are just that, a guide. Until staffing levels are mandated, there is always the option to not implement them.

Sometimes politicians are responsive to a well-reasoned argument and change their minds. An example is the recent U-turn on migrant nurses admitted to the UK under Tier 2 being allowed to remain after working here for six years. However, this has been cited as a ‘temporary rule change’, so continued vigilance will be needed.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council has now announced its revalidation requirements and children’s nurses should not leave organising their portfolio until the last minute. To help you provide continuing professional development evidence, part four of the endocrinology series is also in this issue.

For readers who have not yet explored RCNi’s online resource, including its revalidation aid portfolio, it is user-friendly and provides a range of good information. For example, nominations for the RCNi Nurse Awards 2016 are now open, and this journal is seeking a new student columnist.

Meanwhile, newly qualified nurse Lisa Kirwan writes about her experiences of coming to live in London and working on a paediatric intensive care unit.

This month’s journal is varied. Readers can also find out how parents can improve their child’s continence management and learn lessons from a lipohypertrophy workshop.