Nurse shortage at Pinderfields Hospital is pushing staff to breaking point

Pinderfields Hospital.
Pinderfields Hospital.

Hospital bosses are being warned that nurses at Pinderfields are at breaking point because of a chronic staff shortage.

A worried staff member contacted the Express to say that on one ward, 33 are patients being covered by just two staff, but says this is symptomatic across the entire hospital.

The nurse, who did not want to be named, said the situation is likely to spiral with some staff set to take sick leave due to the stressful environment.

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She said: “We keep asking for help, but nothing is done and the staff are ready to go off sick.

“It’s happening across most wards and it’s been getting worse over the last three months. We physically can’t look after that many patients.

“This is as bad as it’s ever been and is a disaster waiting to happen.”

The Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust, which runs Pinderfields, admitted there is a nursing shortage across the country, and that our district was ‘not immune to the issue’.

David Melia, director of nursing, said: “We employ more nurses now than in previous years.

“Nevertheless we have an average vacancy figure of approximately 10 per cent.

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“Like many other trusts, we also continue to experience increased numbers of patients attending our emergency departments, and the increased demand for our services means we have had to have extra beds open to accommodate our patients.

“We absolutely recognise this places additional pressure on our ward staff, who are doing a tremendous job in circumstances we know are often challenging.

“We are taking a number of steps to address the situation.”

He said more than 120 jobs have been offered to nurses who are set to qualify in September and that the trust was continually developing new types of roles in nursing.