Occasionally consultants are asked by their nursing colleagues to support an application to attend a Joint Board course. More often than not the response is to throw up one's hands in horror and say ‘Not another management course. Don't nurses do any nursing these days?’ I believe that if doctors knew a little more about the Joint Board and its courses they would press more vigorously for secondment of nurses for this purpose; it must be noted that the numbers of psychiatric nurses who attend is abysmally low. There are relatively few courses available throughout the country, and Areas seem unwilling to accept responsibility for putting on such training programmes. Even those which are available do not always receive adequate support, largely, no doubt, because so many psychiatric hospitals are understaffed and cannot spare nurses to attend.
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