Nurses at a hospital run by a major private healthcare provider have been threatened with disciplinary action after apparently refusing to treat coronavirus patients, according to a leaked email seen by HSJ.
The email was sent on Sunday by a senior matron at Nuffield Health’s Cheltenham Hospital, which has been made available to the NHS during the COVID-19 outbreak.
She said: “I’m hoping to get another undisturbed day as I’m going to have to formally take on everyone who won’t help on the C19 side."
“Unfortunately, it will be a disciplinary matter and referral to the [Nursing and Midwifery Council]. I really don’t want to go down that route but they’re giving me little choice.”
It is not clear why staff had refused to help with COVID-19 work, but one staff member who spoke with HSJ said nurses had objected to working without personal protective equipment.
A spokesman for Nuffield Health said: “We can categorically state that we have been provided with a full supply of PPE from the local NHS trust so that all members of the team are protected when they treat COVID-19 patients. The team has also been given the appropriate training to ensure they can carry out their roles safely.”
Source: HSJ, 14 April 2020