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Camilla Cavendish: Health care assistants 'need to be heard'

The Department of Health has asked Camilla Cavendish to lead an independent review into health care assistants in the NHS and care homes.

The review comes as a direct result of the publication of the Francis report that revealed that the most basic elements of care were neglected in Mid Staffordshire hospital.

Mr Cavendish, journalist and assistant editor of the Times, hopes to report at the end of May.

Talking to Today presenter James Naughtie, Ms Cavendish explained the problems within the NHS and outlined the necessity of her review.

She explained that one of the issues with care in the NHS is that there is a general misunderstand among patients and members of the public in distinguishing between health care assistants and qualified nurses.

"Care assistants seem to feel quite undervalued... and their voice hasn't really been heard," she explained, emphasising how important their role is within care.

She said that she aimed to look at how health care assistants can be better supported in terms of training and career progression.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4's Today programme on Wednesday 20 February 2013.

  • 20 Feb 2013
  • From the section Health