Once again the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) finds itself in a state of crisis as it goes blindly from one catastrophe to another without any respite in sight. The RCN has reported on numerous crises within the profession and yet the Council has seen an unprecedented turn of events over the last few months of such seriousness that they could bring the RCN into disrepute—again.
The governance of the College has been the subject of much scrutiny on various occasions in recent years. RCN members passed a motion of no confidence in the RCN Council at an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) in 2018 and in 2019 they signalled their dissatisfaction related to the mistakes the RCN made concerning the 2018 NHS pay deal. An independent review was undertaken, considering governance and decision-making processes at the RCN (Centre for Public Scrutiny, 2020). The review revealed (not for the first time) that the RCN needs to ensure that members are given the opportunity to influence and shape the organisation; they need to know and be assured that there will be openness and transparency as well as establishing if the structures that they have in place are fit for purpose.
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