The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) has responded an audit that revealed the current state of children and young people’s health services.
From the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), the Facing the Future Audit showed that current employees are being overworked.
‘This report sheds light on the state of children's and young people’s healthcare services, which are overstretched and understaffed,’ said Fiona Smith, professional lead for children and young people at the RCN.
‘The severe lack of registered children’s nurses means that children and young people are missing out on the vital care they need. The report highlights that children’s community nursing services are critical for ensuring timely discharge from hospital and for preventing readmissions. Yet these essential services are being decommissioned - disadvantaging children and young people who are cared for at home.’
The report revealed concerns on the pressures on the paediatric workforce and a variation in the how services meet care standards, which ‘threatens the sustainability of the healthcare system’.
The audit also showed that services in primary and secondary care were not always working together to improve pathways in unscheduled care.
‘Greater collaboration is needed between all children’s services and the RCN welcomes the opportunity to work with RCPCH and RCGP to help improve standards,’ continued Ms Smith.
‘There are no second chances for children and young people’s health – the Government must adequately fund and properly resource their healthcare or risk storing up problems for the future.’