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* News / UKNursing Shortage: IELTS Requirement for Foreign Nurses Could be Reduced to 6.5 by Idowu Olabode: May 22, 2017, 01:31:34 PM
Easier language tests could be brought in for foreign nurses after hospital managers said too many are being turned away for poor English.

Regulators are embarking on a “stocktake” of the standards following lobbying from senior managers and recruitment agencies, who want the pass rate to be reduced.

It comes amid widespread shortages of nurses, with a recent drop in the numbers coming to the UK from EU countries.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council, which regulates more than 680,000 nurses and midwives, is now  “gathering data and evidence” about whether the standards should be changed. The  matter is due to be discussed at a board meeting later this week.

Patients’ groups and the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) expressed alarm, warning that any drop in standards could jeopardise safety.

The watchdog has already recently relaxed its rules. Since last year, nurses and midwives from overseas have been able to take a set of language exams in two sittings, using the  best scores from each, to achieve a pass.

Now senior managers and commercial recruitment agencies are calling for a further weakening of the rules, to lower the pass score from 7 to 6.5, on a nine-point system.

Joyce Robins, from Patient Concern, said: “The  notion of dropping the standards in this way fills me with trepidation - it is really worrying.”

“Communication is such an important part of healthcare, and it is already often where things go wrong. I don’t  think we can  afford to take risks like this.”

Andrea Jenkyns, a Conservative member of the Commons health select committee, last night urged the regulator not to embark on such changes.

"It is absolutely imperative that we don't reduce language standards for nurses and midwives in the NHS,” she said, warning that healthcare required “clarity of communication and understanding.”

“Sometimes life or death decisions need to be made and I would be concerned about the potential impact on patient safety,” she said.

Janet Davies, chief executive of the RCN also expressed concern. "Clear communication is vital in nursing and the NMC must make sure the tests remain rigorous. We will not accept any quick fixes designed to make up for the shortage of nurses in the UK," she said.

“As we leave the EU, the Government needs to help to train the next generation of British nurses if it is to avoid the staffing crisis getting even worse."

Language tests for overseas nurses were introduced in 2007, but until last year, those who came to the UK from EU countries were exempt from them.

The NMC said  no decision had been taken about any change in the rules

“Our foremost consideration must always be protection of patients and the public and we will be gathering data and evidence to inform our consideration of whether any variation in either direction is needed to the current standards,”  the board  paper states. 

A petition calling for the pass  rate  to  be reduced  has been signed by more than 3,600 nurses.

The  man behind  it,  Febin Cyriac, is the managing partner of a UK healthcare recruitment firm, which targets nurses from overseas. Mr Cyriac, who is also employed by a fast  food delivery chain, makes no mention of his commercial interest  in expanding recruitment from overseas, in the public petition.

NHS trust senior managers have called on the regulator to drop  the pass  rates.

Jackie Daniel, chief executive of University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation trust, has written to the head of the NMC, calling for pass rates  to be reduced.

Ms Daniel asked for  the system to be  reviewed, after scores  of nurses recruited by the  trust were rejected by regulators for poor  English. Just two of 104  new  staff recruited from overseas in 18 months  were able to start  work  at her trust.

The senior manager said the NHS was too short staffed to afford to lose overseas nurses to countries  such as the United States and Canada, which accep a lower, 6.5 pass rate.

“We need these applicants,” she said. "We are reaching a point in the road now where things are coming to a head in terms of workforce."

Last month a report by healthcare staffing agency HCL Workforce Solutions said the current  language requirements  were “unjustified”.

Across a sample of 14 NHS trusts, around 50  per cent of around 2,000 nurses it has recruited have either dropped out of the process or been removed since November 2014 because of failed tests, it  said. The delays and repeat tests meant it was taking an average of a year between recruitment  and deployment in the NHS, the report said.

The report’s authors told Nursing Times that until last year - when language tests were extended  to EU countries - nurses from elsewhere  in Europe were usually able  to start work in the UK within two months.

An NMC spokesman said: “Patient safety is always our first priority and as such, the Code requires all nurses and midwives to have the necessary command of English in order to practise safely and effectively."

He said the regulator was aware of concerns about the current policy, and would gather evidence in the coming months but had not committed to changing the standard.

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* Travel Nursing / Re: How to Apply for Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program Canada 2017 by segun: May 22, 2017, 01:24:28 AM
Your information is quite useful. Whoever has gotten any job offer from any of the job boards share keep us informed.

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* MCPDP / which benin republic Cotonou university is accredited by nursing council in nigeria by Abubakar hassan: May 21, 2017, 07:32:02 PM
hello my fellow Nigerian
I want to apply for university in Cotonou but I don't know which schools is accredited...
plz which school offer bsc. nursing and  accredited by n.u.c also recognize by nursing and midwifery council of nigeria???

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* Research / Instagram Worst Social Media App for Young People’s Mental Health-Research by Idowu Olabode: May 21, 2017, 12:37:00 PM
"YouTube was found to have the most positive impact, while Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook and Twitter all demonstrated negative effects overall on young people’s mental health."

Instagram is the most detrimental social networking app for young people’s mental health, followed closely by Snapchat, according to a new report by the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) in the UK.

Their study, #StatusofMind, surveyed almost 1500 young people aged 14 to 24 on how certain social media platforms impact health and wellbeing issues such as anxiety, depression, self-identity and body image.

YouTube was found to have the most positive impact, while Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook and Twitter all demonstrated negative affects overall on young people’s mental health.

Instagram — the image-saturated app with over 700 million users worldwide — topped the list in terms of negative impact, most notably among young women, stated the report, published Friday.

Instagram draws young women to “compare themselves against unrealistic, largely curated, filtered and Photoshopped versions of reality,” Matt Keracher, author of the report, told CNN.

“Instagram easily makes girls and women feel as if their bodies aren’t good enough as people add filters and edit their pictures in order for them to look ‘perfect,’ ” an anonymous female respondent said in the report.

To tackle the problem, the RSPH has called for social media platforms to take action in order to help combat young users’ feelings of inadequacy and anxiety by placing a warning on images that have been digitally manipulated.

“We’re not asking these platforms to ban Photoshop or filters, but rather to let people know when images have been altered so that users don’t take the images on face value as real,” Keracher said.

“We really want to equip young people with the tools and the knowledge to be able to navigate social media platforms not only in a positive way but in a way that promotes good mental health,” he added.

The survey concluded that while Instagram negatively affected body image, sleep patterns and added to a sense of “FOMO” — the fear of missing out — the image app was also a positive outlet for self-expression and self-identity for many of its young users.

Professional YouTuber Laci Green, a health vlogger with 1.5 million subscribers said that education surrounding mental health issues in a digital age is an educational imperative for young people.

“Because platforms like Instagram and Facebook present highly curated versions of the people we know and the world around us, it is easy for our perspective of reality to become distorted,” she said. “Socializing from behind a screen can also be uniquely isolating, obscuring mental health challenges even more than usual.”

Green added that it is important we lay the groundwork now to minimize potential harm as the first generation of social media users become adults.

YouTube was the only social media platform that demonstrated an overall positive impact on young people’s mental health in the study.

A health crisis or an educational opportunity?

The report also found that it’s not just what young people are engaging with on social media, but also how long they are engaging with it.

Young people who spend more than two hours per day connecting on social networking sites are more likely to report poor mental health, including psychological distress, according to the report.

“Platforms that are supposed to help young people connect with each other may actually be fueling a mental health crisis,” Shirley Cramer, chief executive of RSPH noted in the report.

To address this, the RSPH have also recommended the introduction of a pop-up warning to alert users that they have been online for too long.

Seven in ten young people surveyed supported the recommendation, but with experts describing social media use as more addictive than cigarettes and alcohol, it’s not clear whether a “heavy usage” pop-up would be enough to break through that barrier.

Sir Simon Wessely, President of the UK’s Royal College of Psychiatrists supports an education-based approach and warns that demonizing social media is not the answer.

“I am sure that social media plays a role in unhappiness, but it has as many benefits as it does negatives,” he said. “We need to teach children how to cope with all aspects of social media — good and bad — to prepare them for an increasingly digitized world. There is real danger in blaming the medium for the message.”

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* News / Nurse-to-patient ratios must be put into law: Taiwan legislator by Idowu Olabode: May 21, 2017, 12:27:05 PM
Legislating for fixed minimum nurse-to-patient ratios is necessary to remedy deficiencies in the hospital review system, New Power Party (NPP) Legislator Hung Tzu-yung (洪慈庸) said on Friday, proposing amendments to the Medical Care Act (醫療法) and the National Health Insurance Act (全民健康保險法).

“While the assessment system stipulates nurse-to-patient ratios, it does not have the force and standing of law,” Hung said, calling for the Medical Care Act to be amended to stipulate that the nurse-to-patient ratio should not rise to more than one to seven in academic medical centers, the highest grade of healthcare institutions.

Metropolitan hospitals would be required to maintain ratios of under one to 10, while ratios for local community hospitals would be required to be under one to 12 under the draft bill, which would also amend the National Health Insurance Act to provide for higher payments for hospitals with better ratios.

Regulatory assessment standards call for academic medical centers to maintain ratios at less than one to nine, she said.

“Assuming assessment numbers are accurate, most hospitals should be able to meet these standards,” she said, adding that academic medical centers reported an average ratio of one to 8.3 in 2015.

Giving minimum ratios statutory force was necessary to guarantee the continuity of the policy, encouraging hospitals to permanently hire additional staff, she said.
More rigorous ratios would help ameliorate widespread labor violations at hospitals, National Taipei University of Nursing and Health Sciences professor Chiu Hui-ju (邱慧洳) said, adding that nurses are routinely forced to work illegal overtime.

“The assessment process only takes place one or two days out of the year, so there is a tendency to massage numbers to get through each round before returning to business as usual afterward,” she said, while praising the legislation for mandating a more rigorous definition of a nurse’s role, excluding interns and graduates of professional schools.

Lee Wei (李為), a nurse practitioner and spokesman for the Taiwan Medical Alliance for Labor Justice and Patient Safety, called for more rigorous inspections, saying that the accuracy of assessment figures is questionable.

Many hospitals alter shift patterns to increase the number of nurses on duty when inspectors arrive and even temporarily transfer personnel between departments, he said.

Source : Taipei Times

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* News / LA Nurse Floors Rival, Wins California State Democratic Party Chairman position by Idowu Olabode: May 21, 2017, 08:37:00 AM
Eric Bauman was elected chair of the California Democratic Party on Saturday, winning a tight 1,493-to-1,431 victory over Kimberly Ellis of Richmond, capping a heated battle to replace outgoing chair John Burton, longtime San Francisco legislator.

Bauman, 58, is a Los Angeles nurse who is the party’s vice chair and a political operative. The longtime party organizer was endorsed by many elected officeholders.

Ellis, 43, had promised to overhaul the party by challenging it to be more progressive. Her supporters — many clad in fuchsia shirts that read “Unbossed and Unbought” — gave a nod to Ellis’ refusal to accept contributions to her campaign from tobacco and oil companies and other corporate interests.

Even though the top two candidates largely shared similar progressive positions on the major issues, the race was seen as illustrative of the divisions among California Democrats — and of the national party.

Those splits shrouded the party’s three-day convention, which ends Sunday. Several times over the weekend, fissures ruptured between the party’s progressive wing — the Sen. Bernie Sanders-friendly, more activist-driven faction whose signature issue is passing a single-payer health plan — and its more traditional stalwarts.

“If you dismiss progressive values and reinforce the status quo, don’t assume that activists in California and around this country are going to stay with the Democratic Party,” RoseAnn DeMoro, executive director of National Nurses United and a progressive leader, warned delegates Saturday before the vote.

Many booed and heckled Democratic National Committee chair Tom Perez during a Friday speech, and others tried to interrupt an address to the delegation Saturday by Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, D-Paramount (Los Angeles County).

At both events, the famously profane Burton tried to defuse the demonstrations, often while dropping four-letter words, by pointing out that it was superfluous to protest because Democrats support single-payer health plan.

“One-two-three, everybody say it: single payer!” Burton said, leading the crowd in a chant. “Now are you f— happy and can be courteous to the speakers?”

Ellis said she was running “to redefine what it means to be a Democrat.”

Speaking after Ellis to the same women’s group Saturday, Bauman said: “Our party doesn’t need to be redefined. Our Democrats don’t need to be redefined because each and every person in this room knows what it means to be a Democrat.”

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* News / Re: Malawi Government to Recruit 600 Nurses by Edna Njeru: May 21, 2017, 05:54:15 AM
I would wish to work in your country am a Kenyan nurse currently working in a government hospital. I did  my nursing council exam April 2016 i scored a pass. Am passionate about  patients and i can work in any environment whatsoever. Waiting to hear from you.                Thanks  Edna Wamboi Njeru 

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* Schools of Nursing / Re: Kenya Medical Training College Intake for 2016/2017/2018 Application Form is on by Beth Wangui: May 21, 2017, 01:18:08 AM
Hae...i applied for the community health nursing certificate level..i followed the procedure to the latter but haveny got the feedback yet...please assist..waiting for your reply soonest.Thankyou in advance

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* Travel Nursing / Re: Saudi Prometric Exam for Nurses Sample Questions free Download by jean: May 20, 2017, 11:16:49 PM
please help i will be taking saudi nurse technician exam next week any inputs you could give. thanks a lot

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* Undergraduate / Re: Update: Ahmadu Bello University Zaria Begins Online Nursing Programme by Idowu Olabode: May 20, 2017, 05:03:13 PM

Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Distance learning Center is proposing to commence deployment of Bachelor in Nursing Sciences (BNSc) in 2017/2018 session subject to approval by the National University commission.For more information you can call the Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Distance learning center official lines on MTN 08163452628, ETISALAT -08176446670 (calls shall be  entertain during working hours Mondays  to Friday 8am to 4pm )

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