Jane Bates: you are wrong about agency nurses, Mr Health Secretary

Agency nurses don't demoralise NHS staff – it's the sheer lack of nurses that's the problem
agency nurse

Agency nurses don't demoralise NHS staff – it's the sheer lack of nurses that's the problem

It’s one thing stepping into a frightening unknown, quite another wearing a dodgy outfit while you are doing it.

Petrifying and ridiculous – that sums up my year as an agency nurse. It’s a scary way to earn a living: new hospitals, new situations, new people to work alongside, although I got lucky and had several long-term placements.

Oh yes, the dodgy outfit. I am five foot tall and a size eight but the only uniform the agency had, I kid you not, was extra large. Not only was it voluminous, it was long – if I had bumped into a Dalek it would have greeted me as one of its own.

It meant that whenever I started a new job my obstetric credentials


Want to read more?

Unlock full access to RCNi Plus today

Save over 50% on your first three months:

  • Customisable clinical dashboard featuring 200+ topics
  • Unlimited online access to all 10 RCNi Journals including Nursing Standard
  • RCNi Learning featuring 180+ RCN accredited learning modules
  • NMC-compliant RCNi Portfolio to build evidence for revalidation
  • Personalised newsletters tailored to your interests

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this?