Care England, the largest representative body for independent social care providers, has published a ground breaking report; Sustainability, Innovation and Empowerment: A Five Year Vision for the Independent Social Care Sector warns that the whole care system could collapse if providers and commissioners do not work together and more nurses are not recruited into the independent sector. It states that the next five years will be crucial in ensuring that the care and support services that many people rely on remain sustainable.
The new role being introduced by Care England will be a hybrid role for nursing in the care home sector, which will be somewhere between a care worker and a nurse, could save care homes money and help solve the nursing shortage crisis and would enable registered nurses to take on more of a supervisory role, whilst these assistant care practitioners, as they would be known would carry out the practical elements of nursing care.
Their practical duties could include continence assessments and sore prevention assessments and planning. In order to qualify to carry out this role, prospective assistant care practitioners would undertake supervised learning modules, which would be internally verified through supervised practice.
Professor Martin Green, chief executive of Care England said, “An inability to recruit nurses in the independent care sector is one of the main issues that is causing additional pressure to be placed on the care home, acute sector and commissioning budgets.
We are in the process of developing a new hybrid role for nursing in the care home sector which would fall between a care worker and a nurse, but there is still a major supply-side problem, which the Government needs to urgently address if the nursing home sector is to survive”.
Care England envisages that the new hybrid nurse-care worker will help care homes as they won’t have to employ so many nurses and it will allow current nurses to progress in their career as they will be able to take on more of a leadership role, thus helping with retention.
It would also like to see trainee nurses being given more career options as currently a career in hospital is the only realistic option presented to them, according to Care England.
Work placements in care homes need to be encouraged more and care home nurses need to be added to the Migration Advisory Committee’s Shortage Occupations List, said the report. This would enable care home providers to recruit from outside the European Economic Area (EEA).
To read the full report along with other suggestions that Care England have made, go to:http://www.careengland.org.uk/sites/careengland/files/Care%20England%20-%20Five%20Year%20Vision.pdf
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News Article Source: http://www.careengland.org.uk/crunch-time