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NHS staff overstretched



By Gareth Iacobucci

Nearly half of all NHS staff feel they do not have enough time to do their job properly – or that there are not enough staff to enable them to do it.

The results of the Care Quality Commission’s latest NHS Staff Survey show that staff continue to feel overstretched, with 42% reporting conflicting demands on their time at work.

However, there was some positive signs compared to last year – with improvement in the proportion of staff receiving appraisals, up from 64% in the 2008 survey to 69% this year, and increases in the proportion who said they received the training, learning and development that was identified.

The survey also showed high, and rising, levels of job satisfaction among staff and a reduction in the proportion of staff saying they intend to leave their current job.

But only 40% felt that they work in well-structured teams in which staff have clear objectives, work closely together to meet these objectives, and regularly review and reflect on performance (compared with 39% last year).

There were also big differences across the NHS, with half of staff in PCTs (49%, unchanged on last year) working in effective teams compared with only one in six (18%, compared with 17% in 2008) of ambulance trust staff.