A STUDENT nurse from West Yorkshire has written an open letter to the care minister after she said they are “not deemed to be providing a service”.
Liv Massey started her nursing course in September 2017, meaning she was not eligible for the bursary like in previous years and has also worked over 2000 unpaid hours on placements.
Now a third year student nurse who stepped up to help Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust, she described the minister’s admissions as “yet another kick to the ground”.
MP Helen Whately made the comments in a letter sent to another nurse which was later shared online.
She wrote: “Student nurses in training are supernumerary and are not deemed to be providing a service. They are required to undertake 2,300 hours of clinical practice to learn the skills necessary for entry to the workforce.
“Whilst they may be performing limited clinical duties, this is under close supervision and they are not being paid to staff hospitals.”
The minister did not believe grants that were not given to those who missed out will be back-dated.
Writing on behalf of her fellow student nurses, Liv said: “If I’m honest, I’m struggling to put into words the upset and hurt you have caused with such a simple statement. To you, this was a passing comment, one that you evidently did not think about before you said. But to us, this is yet another kick to the ground.
“I have worked over 2000 unpaid hours for the NHS, but I don’t mind. I want to be a nurse because I care. I care probably a bit too much. So much so, I spend all of my time thinking about others and I sometimes forget to care for myself. But I’m not providing a service?
“Throughout my three years, I’ve been a shoulder to cry on and a hand to hold for patients. I’ve made them smile, I’ve distracted them from thinking about dying and I’ve helped to save the little bit of hope they thought they’d lost. I’ve helped patients wash, dress, eat, drink, stand and walk. I’ve helped to provide them with medication and advice to better their health. I’ve helped save lives during emergency crash calls and I’ve helped make the last days, minutes and seconds of life more comfortable for those at the end of their time. But I’m not providing a service?
“I was one of the many 3rd year Student Nurses to be deployed to help relieve the strain on the NHS during one of the UK’s worst pandemics. I have helped COVID-19 patients during their fight with coronavirus and helped them recover from post-COVID symptoms. I have reassured relatives and helped to comfort them during one of the hardest and most uncertain times in their lives. I even moved out of my family home as I didn’t want to put my parents at risk. Alongside all of this, I’ve still been doing my University assignments to pass my degree. But I’m not providing a service?
“I’ve cried and cried, I’m stressed, and quite frankly I’ve had enough. So to read your statement today, I simply questioned why I bother getting up for work each day? But then I remembered that I’m not doing this for you, or for me, I’m doing this to help those who appreciate us.”
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