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Health commission releases notice on improving nurses' work environment

Updated: Sep 02,2020 02:16 PM    Xinhua

Local health authorities and medical institutions in China are required to raise income and improve the practicing environment of nurses, according to a notice released by the National Health Commission on Sept 2.

Frontline nurses will be the first to receive performance bonuses, promotions and training in order to retain teams and motivate them, according to the document.

In addition, healthcare institutions are responsible for protecting the legal rights of nurses, including ensuring their access to payments, welfare policies, social security programs and protective equipment.

Hospital administrators should conduct regular reviews over difficulties in nursing departments and avoid asking nurses to run errands not within their specialty.

Health institutions are not allowed to reduce the number of frontline nurses at will. In principle, the proportion of frontline nurses should account for no less than 95 percent of the total, the notice said.

It is encouraged to employ flexible shifts for nurses and send nurses to departments handling a sudden surge in workload. Hospitals are also required to formulate contingency plans in preparation for emergencies that might lead to higher demands for nurses.

According to the commission, there were 4.45 million nurses in China as of the end of last year. They have also played a crucial role in curbing the COVID-19 epidemic in China.