News

Charity reveals ‘shameful’ rise in nurses seeking financial help

The Cavell Nurses’ Trust received nearly a third more calls from nursing staff in the first half of this year compared with last year.
Hardship

A charity supporting nurses experiencing hardship is concerned at a steep rise in calls from people seeking help since the start of 2016.

The Cavell Nurses Trust said there was a 32% increase in calls in the first half of this year (1,179 enquiries) compared with the the same period in 2016 (891 enquiries).

The charity helps working and retired nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants who are suffering personal or financial hardship. Illness is the most common reason nursing professionals contact the trust; other reasons include disability, older age and domestic abuse.

Shameful

Chair Simon Knighton said the charity was pleased more nurses were getting in touch, but greatly concerned by the rise in need.

The charitys research revealed that two

A charity supporting nurses experiencing hardship is concerned at a steep rise in calls from people seeking help since the start of 2016. 


The constraints and challenges nurses face every day can lead to personal crises, says the charity. Picture: Cavell Nurses’ Trust

The Cavell Nurses’ Trust said there was a 32% increase in calls in the first half of this year (1,179 enquiries) compared with the the same period in 2016 (891 enquiries). 

The charity helps working and retired nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants who are suffering personal or financial hardship. Illness is the most common reason nursing professionals contact the trust; other reasons include disability, older age and domestic abuse.

‘Shameful’

Chair Simon Knighton said the charity was pleased more nurses were getting in touch, but ‘greatly concerned’ by the rise in need. 

The charity’s research revealed that two in five nurses report having a physical or mental health problem expected to last a year or more, and that nurses are twice as likely as the general public to suffer financial hardship. 

‘This is shameful,’ Mr Knighton said. ‘These are the same people that have worked to their last ounce of strength to be here for us after recent terror attacks in Manchester and London, and in the aftermath of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Personal crises

‘Policy-makers sometimes refer to the JAMs – those people who are ‘just about managing’. It is not hard to understand how, with so many facing the constraints and challenges that we see every day, there will be some who face dramatic and heart-rending personal crises of finance, ill-health or relationship breakdown.’

The trust provides nursing staff with grants, advice and help in maximising access to benefits. It supported 1,900 people last year, including providing £500,000 in financial support, and called for more people to get behind efforts to support nurses in hardship. 

RCN is holding a summer of protest over the government’s 1% public sector pay cap, and says there has been a 14% real-terms fall in nursing pay since 2010. 

Recent government figures show that median pay for nurses fell by almost £1 an hour between 2010 and 2015. 


Further information 


In other news

Sign up to continue reading for FREE

OR

Subscribe for unlimited access

Enjoy 1 month's access for £1 and get:

  • Full access to primary healthcare.com
  • Bi-monthly digital edition
  • RCNi Portfolio and interactive CPD quizzes
  • RCNi Learning with 200+ evidence-based modules
  • 10 articles a month from any other RCNi journal

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

Jobs