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‘Wales a step closer on leading the way on safe nurse staffing levels’ - William Powell

2014 Mawrth 6 9:16 AM


Assembly Members today voted through Kirsty Williams AMs' proposals for minimum nurse staffing levels to be enshrined in law.

In December, Kirsty Williams was successful in the National Assembly's ballot to introduce backbench legislation. Her proposal would see Wales become the first country in the UK with a legal duty on safe nurse staffing levels.

Assembly Members across all parties supported Kirsty's proposals in the chamber today, which means the proposal will now proceed to the next stage of the legislation process.

William Powell AM commented:

"I am delighted that we are now a step closer to this proposal becoming a reality. I believe it has the potential to revolutionise healthcare in Wales.

"Assembly Members across all parties saw the merit in allowing this proposal to be further explored. This proposal will ensure safe and compassionate care by having the right number of nurses on our wards.

"The Francis Report, which looked at failings by Mid Staffordshire Trust, cited low staffing levels as one reason which contributed to poor treatment at the trust. There is a clear link between staffing levels and the safety and quality of care on hospital wards.

"It is a fact that nurses in Wales have the highest ratio of patients to care for than any other part of the UK. This proposal would change this to ensure that we have safe staffing levels in our hospitals."


Number of nurses in the UK:




N Ireland

Mean patients per nurse





RNs as a percentage of staff





(Source: RCN)