HEALTH chiefs in Burton are looking at various ways of halting a predicted nursing crisis in the town.
Practice nurses from across East Staffordshire have been working on plans to raise the profile of the profession and make it an attractive career option after it was predicted that there could be a shortfall in the next 10 years.
Burton-based practice nurse lead Gill Boast said: "We know there will be a shortfall of practice nurses in the future, as many will be retiring in the next 10 years.
"Because it can take 18 months to become proficient in the role in line with national competencies, we urgently need to plan now to make sure the work force we will need in the future is in place."
Professor Bayliss-Pratt, a former nurse tutor at Wolverhampton University who is responsible for setting up student nurse placements with practice nurses at Wetmore Road and Carlton Street surgeries in Burton, said: "I am keen to promote more student nurse placements with practice nurses and this was a great platform to talk to nurses about taking this forward."
Brigid Stacey, director of nursing for NHS England in Shropshire and Staffordshire, said: "It is clear how committed nurses in the area to delivering care to their patients.
"With care being delivered closer to home, it is important that we harnesses this passion and continue to work closely with GPs to provide further development for practice nurses."
Heather Johnstone, chief nurse at East Staffordshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: "Practice nurses play a vital role in the care of patients often enabling them to receive treatment and support."