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Staffing issuesJun 9, 2021

Patient safety could be compromised as physios and other AHPs take up 'designated nursing roles'

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) issued a press release today (9 June) claiming that increasing numbers of NHS posts are being opened up to physiotherapists and other allied health professionals (AHPs), despite them being designated as ‘registered nursing (RN) roles’.

The release points to ‘growing instances’ of staff lacking nurse qualifications taking up registered nursing roles – a practice that it says ‘leaves patients without professional nursing care and compromises safety’.


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Appointing physios and other AHPs to 'nursing posts' could pose patient safety risks

'Valuing' the nursing role in junior and senior posts

The press release states: ‘We’ve found examples where employers have formally opened registered nurse vacancies to people without registered nursing qualifications, or from different professional backgrounds, including physiotherapy and occupational therapy.'

It is based on a position paper titled RCN position on preserving safety and preventing harm valuing the role of the registered nurse, which is available on the RCN’s website.

This states that more and more vacancies ‘that require a registered nurse’ – from band 5 posts up to associate director of nursing level – are being advertised on NHS and other websites. The adve...

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