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A call for more school nurses.

A huge rise is needed in the number of school nurses so all children have access to health professionals, claims a leading nursing group.

A Royal College of Nursing poll of more than 1,200 school nurses found less than a fifth felt there were enough school nurses in their area ( dropping to only 10pc among nurses working only in the state sector. The nurses reported concerns about heavy workloads and the lack of resources available to them.

The Royal College of Nursing said the number of school nurses needed to double to ensure that all children would be able to benefit in the UK.

In last year's Public Health White Paper, the Government pledged to increase the number of school nurses in England in efforts to tackle issues such as obesity and health inequalities.

Half of the nurses questioned in the latest poll felt they were "stretched too thinly" and were unable to provide a good enough service due to workload pressures and lack of staff.

Royal College general secretary Dr Beverly Malone said: "It's clear from our survey just how few school nurses we have. We know that in many parts of the UK children do not have access to an adequate school nurse service, and this is simply unacceptable. School nurses do a wonderful job under difficult circumstances."
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Apr 26, 2005
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