Caring hearts and minds (2 of 2)

August 25, 2011

Retired nurses harking back to an imagined golden age of nursing that coincided with their youth need to read some history. The 1960s and 1970s saw episodes of appalling abuse and neglect committed by nurses wholly untainted by any connection with university (for example, the abuses at Ely Hospital in Cardiff and St Augustine's Hospital in Chartham, Kent, to name but two, were notorious cases that shocked the nation).

They also need to explain why nurses, uniquely among healthcare professionals, are rendered uncaring by exposure to higher education.

The sad reality is that successive governments have increased the proportion of healthcare assistants in all clinical areas so that an encounter with a registered nurse during a hospital stay today is an increasingly rare event.

John Adams, Corby

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