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Dangerous staffing levels in Borders hospitals, says union

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A trade union has written to every politician representing the Scottish Borders to highlight "dangerous staffing levels" in local hospitals.

Unison claims serious breaches of safety guidelines are occurring daily due to a lack of nurses, auxiliaries and porters. The letter says staff are unable to take proper rest breaks or log serious incidents in the reporting system.

NHS Borders said patient and staff safety was its number one priority.

Unison said working conditions in the area were regularly in breach of regulations.

Greig Kelbie, the union's regional officer in the Borders, said: "We are getting regular messages from our members to tell us about the pressure they are under - and that they can't cope.

"The care system was under pressure before Covid, but the pandemic has exasperated the situation, particularly at NHS Borders.

"The NHS has been stretched to its limits and it is now at the stage where it is dangerous for patients and staff - we're often told about serious breaches of health and safety, particularly at Borders General Hospital where there are issues with flooring and staff falling.

"We work collaboratively with NHS Borders to do what we can, but we also wanted to make politicians aware of how bad things have become.

"We need our politicians to step up and implement change - we want them to make sure the Health and Care Act is brought to the fore and that it protects our members."

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Source: BBC News, 13 May 2022

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