Immediate action needed to attract nursing students

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) has urged the government to take urgent action to encourage students to apply for nursing courses starting this year.

As UCAS outlined a further significant fall in applications to nursing courses in England, the RCN said that there is likely a second drop in trainee nurse numbers this year ‘if measures are not taken to increase applications’. This is despite the Department of Health and Social Care announcing extra nurse training places.

Janet Davies, RCN chief executive, said: “The continued failure of ministers to get a grip on the nurse training situation will jeopardise care for patients. Extra university places are only worthwhile if they are filled and the NHS gets a newly trained nurse at the end. The government knows patients can pay a highest price when there aren’t enough nurses.”

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