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The University of Southampton
Health Sciences

Health Sciences academics to review evidence for safe staffing levels on hospital wards

Published: 20 December 2013

Health Sciences nursing academics from the University of Southampton have been commissioned to conduct a Government-backed review of the evidence on nurse staffing.

The University won an open tender from the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) to support the development of guidelines on safe staffing as part of the Government's response to the Francis report.

Led by Professor Peter Griffiths, chair of health services research at the University's Centre for Innovation and Leadership in Health Sciences, the team will analyse evidence about safe staffing levels on hospital wards.

Professor Griffiths will be joined by Jane Ball, deputy director of the National Nursing Research Unit. They worked together on the RN4CAST study which found widespread problems in care associate with low nurse staffing levels and that hospitals with better staffing had measurably fewer patient deaths.

Professor Griffiths commented: "Getting NICE to come up with guidance on safe staffing is an important part of the Government's response to the Francis Enquiries into failings at Mid-Staffordshire Hospital and other reports of staffing related care failures in NHS hospitals.

"We are very pleased that our research in this area has put us in a position to support NICE in this work by undertaking evidence reviews."

The review will be given to the Staffing Levels Advisory Committee that will make final recommendations on staffing levels in hospitals across the UK.

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