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 1 October 2003



District nurses are getting a raw deal when it comes to pay, grading and career prospects, says the Community Practitioners’ and Health Visitors’ Association.

Last year, The Queen’s Nursing Institute and English National Board published The Invisible Workforce, which reinforced the impression of a demoralised and demotivated district nursing workforce.

The CPHVA believes that the UK’s 26,000 strong district nurse workforce is still losing out and has now produced a ‘road map’ aimed at raising the profession’s status.

The CPHVA’s landmark document, District nursing at the crossroads – a CPHVA perspective published today (1 October) demonstrates, not only that the CPHVA understands the issues that confront district nurses on a daily basis, but offers a template for action.

The launch of document will be mirrored by a five-city district nurse roadshow where the implications for the profession will be highlighted. Belfast, Glasgow, Manchester, London and Cardiff will be hosting conferences in December and in the New Year.

Mark Jones, the CPHVA’s director said: ‘This document puts down a marker of our serious intent to drive forward the agenda for district nursing.’

‘Throughout the United Kingdom, the NHS is facing increased pressure on acute hospital beds. As a result, the importance of maintaining people independently in their own homes and communities has come increasingly to the fore.’

‘An ageing population, which wants to maintain its dignity and health, is just one factor that means that ‘change’ will be a constant, if somewhat troublesome companion.’

‘Twenty-four hour district nursing care is an essential requirement within the national plans for the future of the NHS. Most areas manage their services as three distinct services, day, twilight and night. If a seamless service is to be provided this needs to change.’

Agenda for Change dominates the grading landscape for district nurses. The CPHVA Head of Labour Relations, Barrie Brown said: ‘Over recent years many district nurses have been undervalued and experienced serious grade drift. The CPHVA campaign will help put that wrong right.’




For further information, please contact:

Shaun Noble Communications Officer ( (020) 7939 7043

mobile ( 07768 69 39 40

CPHVA press releases can be seen on the CPHVA web site:

 The CPHVA represents health visitors, school nurses, practice nurses and registered nurses working in the community in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The CPHVA is an autonomous professional section of the amicus trade union. MSF joined with the AEEU to form amicus, the UK’s second largest union, on 1 January 2002.


For further information, please contact

Shaun Noble Press Officer (020) 7939 7043 Mobile 0468 69 39 40 MSF

press releases can be seen on our web site:

Amicus/MSF represents 65,000 health service professionals including the Guild of Healthcare Pharmacists, laboratory scientific staff, the College of Health Care Chaplains, the Community Psychiatric Nurses Association, the Medical Practitioners' Union, clinical psychologists, speech therapists, the Hospital Physicists Association and the Community Practitioners' and Health Visitors' Association.

Amicus/MSF has 400,000 skilled and professional members in a wide range of industries. It is the UK's second largest union.