Theresa Fyffe, Director, RCN Scotland said:
“Numbers of registered nurses are slowly moving in the right direction and it is good to see an increase in people applying to study nursing. But the Scottish Government needs to do everything within its gift to help our existing workforce and ensure that nursing is attractive, well-paid, and meaningfully supported. This is how to equip NHS and care services to help keep patients safe.
“It’s tough going to work every day when there aren’t enough of you and there is seemingly little light at the end of the tunnel. Breaking this cycle through investment in domestic supply and action is about both patient safety and the health of our nursing staff.“Many of our professionals are in the later stages of their career - a third on the register are over 50. These are extremely experienced nurses, who also support new nurses as they choose to join us. There is every reason to aim for oversupply to boost our profession and keep patients safe.”