Clinical placements

How raising concerns makes a difference – and how to go about it

Students may be hesitant to raise safety risks or bullying, but support is available

Students may be hesitant to raise safety risks, bullying or poor care, but support is available

On a recent night shift on a busy acute COVID-19 ward, two of the four registered nurses rostered on shift did not turn up.

This left three healthcare support workers, including Brian Webster, an almost-qualified adult nursing student, and two nurses to care for 20 seriously unwell patients.

Risk to safety due to understaffing

‘It just seemed unsafe and unreasonable for the nurses and patients,’ says Mr Webster.

Brian Webster

‘We really pulled together as a team to get through it, and fortunately one of the nurses was very experienced. But it didn’t feel like a night shift, it


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?