Baly M. Nursing and social change, 3rd edn. London: Routledge; 1995

British Association of Perinatal Medicine. Optimal arrangements for local neonatal units and special care units in the UK including guidance on their staffing: a BAPM framework for practice. 2018. (accessed 2 July 2019)

Care Quality Commission. The state of care in NHS acute hospitals: 2014 to 2016. 2017. (accessed 2 July 2019)

The Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Public Inquiry. Final report. 2013. (accessed 2 July 2019)

Glasper A, Charles-Edwards I. The child first and always: the registered children's nurse over 150 years. Part two. Paediatr Nurs.. 2002; 14:(5)38-43

Glasper A. The regulation of the nursing associate profession: an overview. British Journal of Healthcare Assistants. 2018; 12:(1)38-41

Griffiths P, Recio-Saucedo A, Dall'Ora C The association between nurse staffing and omissions in nursing care: a systematic review. J Adv Nurs.. 2018; 74:(7)1474-1487

The Open University and NHS in partnership to boost nursing numbers on the Isle of Wight. 2019. (accessed 2 July 2019)

Health Foundation, Nuffield Trust, King's Fund. The health care workforce in England. 2018. (accessed 2 July 2019)

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Principles for determining nursing staff requirements in adult inpatient wards in acute hospitals. 2019. (accessed 2 July 2019)

NHS England. ‘More staff not enough – NHS must also be best place to work’ says new NHS people plan. 2019. (accessed 2 July 2019)

NHS England, NHS Improvement. The NHS long term plan. 2019. (accessed 17 July 2019)

NHS Improvement. Interim NHS people plan. 2019. (accessed 2 July 2019)

Nursing and Midwifery Council. NMC briefing. Appropriate staffing in health and care settings. 2016. (accessed 2 July 2019)

Rafferty AM, Clarke SP, Coles J Outcomes of variation in hospital nurse staffing in English hospitals: cross-sectional analysis of survey data and discharge records. Int J Nurs Stud.. 2007; 44:(2)175-182

Royal College of Nursing. Defining staffing levels for children's and young people's services. 2013. (accessed 2 July 2019)

Royal College of Nursing. Join our campaign for safe staffing. 2019a. (accessed 2 July 2019)

Royal College of Nursing. Staffing levels. 2019b.

University tuition fees should be capped at £7,500 not £9,250, government review says. 2019. (accessed 2 July 2019)

Will the NHS Improvement interim plan help solve the nursing staff crisis?

25 July 2019
Volume 28 · Issue 14


Emeritus Professor Alan Glasper, University of Southampton, discusses the recently published people plan, which aspires to tackle workforce shortages that affect the ability of the NHS to deliver optimum care

On 3 June, NHS Improvement launched the Interim NHS People Plan to address staff shortages in the health service. (NHS Improvement, 2019). This aspires to ensure that the NHS Long Term Plan (NHS England, NHS Improvement, 2019), which sets out the Government's 10-year vision for health care in England, does not get derailed by staff shortages. The interim plan aims to address many of the concerns that have been aired about the current staffing crisis, but principally the shortage of nursing staff.

Ever since the creation of the General Nursing Council (GNC) in December 1919 the nursing profession has been beleaguered by staff shortages. The passing of the Nurses Bill, which paved the way for a register of nurses, was controversial because many nurses who had undergone a variety of training courses were not actually eligible to join the register. In fact, the register did not officially open until 27 July 1921 and the process was slow; Ethel Bedford Fenwick, the chair of the registration committee, insisted on personally scrutinising the qualifications of all applicants. Hence, by 1923, there were only 12 097 nurses on the register (Glasper and Charles Edwards, 2002).

Register now to continue reading

Thank you for visiting British Journal of Nursing and reading some of our peer-reviewed resources for nurses. To read more, please register today. You’ll enjoy the following great benefits:

What's included

  • Limited access to clinical or professional articles

  • Unlimited access to the latest news, blogs and video content