Repercussions of the NHS savings comes news that specialist nurses may face cuts. This was revealed by nursing unions and health charities. //
According to them some NHS trusts have identified them as a "soft target".
Those senior nurses who have expertise in diabetes, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, or a range of other long-term problems are specialist nurses.
This follows the news by BBC survey that the overall health service deficit in England is ￡700m out of a total budget of ￡76bn.
Howard Catton, head of policy at the Royal College of Nursing said, "Nurses involved in infection control, palliative care, rheumatology disorders or multiple sclerosis - those posts are being identified as at risk of redundancy and removed in order to help hospitals achieve financial balance."
Vicky Gutteridge, a multiple sclerosis specialist nurse in Wessex Region for three years said, "We're a soft target when savings have to be made. And for a lot of people neurology has been a Cinderella service, and people with MS have often been Cinderella's within that Cinderella service."
Nicola Russell, MS Trust said: "We are worried that MS may be seen as a soft target for cost-cutting because it has a lower profile than some other diseases.It is outrageous that people with MS, who are already vulnerable, are being penalised for shortfalls within the NHS. It's probably going to be too expensive for us to pursue legal action, but this is a lot of money that's been paid out from the charity to the health service over the last three to five years, and to see that under threat in the way that it is now is really very disturbing."
On the flip side a spokesman for the Department of Health in England said specialist nurses will have a key role in providing care closer to patients' homes, especially for people with long-term conditions.
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