• Sweden's news in English

Lack of hospital staff cited in patient deaths

10 Sep 2012, 10:27

Published: 10 Sep 2012 10:27 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The study was carried out by the Swedish Association of Health Professionals (Vårdförbundet) and based on responses gathered at 21 of the association’s local branches.

Three out of every four nurses interviewed responded that the lack of temporary summer staff has been a threat to patient safety.

“Nurses who have taken extra shifts during the holiday period have handed in their notice in September because they can’t manage any longer. It’s unacceptable,” said Sineva Riberio, head of the association in a statement, according to the TT news agency.

Two thirds of the association’s local units report that they have had a considerable lack of specialist nurses and nurses during the summer. There has also been a lack of midwives and biomedical analysts.

The lack of staff on the ward has put an increased strain on those working, with the number of sick days rising and with newly graduated nurses not receiving a sufficient introduction to the workplace.

Staff at the local branches has noticed during the summer that the working environment has become worse, too.

On-site injury numbers have risen and telephone queues and waiting times have become longer, according to the research.

Story continues below…

TT/The Local/og


Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

11:02 September 10, 2012 by voiceofreason
I am a foreign-trained doctor but i cannot work in any capacity in a hospital unless I am SFI-Certified, KOMVUX-Certified AND FOLKUNIVERSITET-Certified in Swedish language.

I cannot work as a Nurse, Intern, Midwife, or Medic just name it.

I happen to know many others in my situation also.
11:19 September 10, 2012 by Great Scott

Your services are badly needed, I can't fly a 747 without the right papers. So learn Swedish and take up the correct procedures to be able to function in Sweden.

Regarding the main story I am reposting what I said in article http://www.thelocal.se/43114/20120909/

It is also very clear that many people here are not aware of the reason for health failures in Sweden. Of course there is no excuse for anybody leaving during an operation unless a substitute can be found. However huge cuts have been made by the current incompetent government. They have closed hospital wards and departments putting pressure on other facilities, reduced the number of doctors and nurses, they have taken away all funding for assistant nurse training. In some areas of Sweden it can be a 1 - 2 hour drive to the nearest appropriate hospital, so it can take up to 4 hours for an ambulance to get a dying person to hospital. This latest loony idea from the government is just moving money from one area to another, what the heath service needs is full founding so it can operate efficiently.

These people do a fantastic job and all you want to do is crucify them, everybody makes mistakes so why keep kicking these people, did you kick the bankers, nooooooooooo, because they are still laughing at you.

I must also say that the situation we are in now, is so we can pay to tax cuts to the rich.
13:07 September 10, 2012 by cogito
Oh dear, another eat-the-rich rant from the resident Soc. Dem. plant.

As you repeat the yourself in every post on every thread ad nauseum, I will do the same:

Swedish healthcare was even shoddier when the Social Democrats held power.

But it was covered up by the media because almost all Swedish journalists were members of guess-which-party.
14:02 September 10, 2012 by willyinstockholm
I don't agree. I think death of these people is not because of shortage of manpower. I strongly believe, it's because of lack of commitment of the healthcare people to what they are supposed to do. It's because of lack of their ambition. It's because a doctor can't say to his/her stomach to postpone eating for one hour later when a patient is dying. It's because healthcare people think patients are services freely and don't think they get their salaries form tax payers. Indeed, it's not because of shortage of doctor or nurses....
22:34 September 10, 2012 by Scepticion
There are valid arguments on both sides.

There is a shortage in hospital care. There are plenty of statistics out there which show that hospitals have not enough ward space and patients need to be accommodated in the wrong ward, increasing chances of errors. The reason for this are the cost cutting measures.

However, there clearly is in many Swede's of the younger generation, a lack of work ethic and commitment to do a good job - whether private or government. If the union contract prescribes that a person can go to lunch at 12, then that is more important than somebody lying on the operating table.

I think the moderate government tries to bring union dominance and government bloat under control with privatizations and cost cutting measures, but alas the success of such measures is a mixed bag and does not really address the root of the problem, as the many scandals in the private ward industry show.
Today's headlines
This is the new top boss of Swedish Ericsson
Börje Ekholm. Photo: Magnus Hjalmarson Neideman/SvD/TT

Telecoms giant Ericsson has appointed a new CEO after a turbulent year for the company.

These are Sweden's best universities: ranking
A new university ranking has been released. Photo: Cecilia Larsson Lantz/Imagebank.sweden.se

At least according to this global ranking, which picks 12 Swedish universities among the top-1000.

Swedish pharmacies restrict paracetamol sales for teens
The move is intended to cut paracetamol overdoses. Photo: Nora Lorek/TT

Sweden's pharmacies are banning teens under 18 from buying more than one pack of pills at a time.

The Local List
12 Swedish words with just awesome literal translations
A filthy-minded lobster, i.e. a snuskhummer. Photo: Gorm Kallestad/NTB scanpix/TT

One of our favourite things about the Swedish language is its wonderful compound words, which range from being utterly bizarre to making perfect sense.

Rwandan genocide suspect held in Sweden
A memorial centre in Kigali, Rwanda. Photo: Ben Curtis/AP

A man has been arrested in Sweden suspected of involvement in the 1994 Rwandan genocide which claimed 800,000 lives.

Sweden can extend border controls, EU says
A police officer carrying out a check at Sweden's border with Denmark. Photo: Emil Langvad/TT

EU countries including Sweden should be granted permission to extend temporary border controls by a period of a further three months, the European Commission has decided.

Nobel Prizes
'I'd say he's arrogant but I'd be lying': Swedes on Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan performing in France. Photo: David Vincent/AP

Almost two weeks have passed since Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature and he has yet to acknowledge the win. The Local asked Swedes what they think of the singer's silence.

Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast by thousands
A Swedish migration authority office in Stockholm. Photo: Maja Suslin/TT

The country has also slashed its prediction for 2017.

Swedish researchers plan new trucks for women drivers
File photo of trucks in Sweden. Photo: Thomas Johansson/TT

Could vehicles adapted for women attract more female truckers to the profession?

These stats show Swedish driving isn't so gender equal
File photo of a Swedish woman driving a car. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

A new survey shows that few Swedish women get behind the wheel when driving with their male partner.

Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available