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What do you think of the ban on hospital staff drinking tea and coffee?

According to a story in the Independent this week, doctors, nurses and others have been banned from drinking hot drinks.

The move is an attempt to appease the public who the hospital said were 'inflamed' by the sight of doctors and nurses enjoying a hot drink while they were waiting for appointments in public areas - including outpatient clinic reception areas - at the Leicester Royal Infirmary, the Glenfield General Hospital and Leicester General Hospital.

The Independent said:

'Staff were informed of the ban in an email from Michelle Scowen, matron for clinical support and imaging, who said the move followed complaints from patients and employees.

She said of the sight of staff enjoying a cup of tea or coffee: 'Clearly this activity has given the wrong impression to staff and the public that clinic staff are not working as hard as they might be.'

What are your thoughts? Is this a step too far? Should doctors be entitled to grab a cuppa when they get the chance during a busy day? Let us know below...

8 replies

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Its really complicated. They want docs to be cheerfull and comforting and then walk around depressed?

    I don't have so much coffee, but know of ppl who run on it. The question is were the stakeholders involved when making this decision?

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous

    In reply to Anonymous:

    I think to make that decision based on the image to the public ie. That we are relaxed and not working hard enough is despicable and another kick in the face for front line nhs staff who more than likely are having a cup of tea at the desk as a poor substitute for not taking a break - I have worked shifts where the only food or drink I have ingested was the cup of coffee and biscuit I had while frantically writing in a patients notes.

    There are occasion where a ban is appropriate - for example I have worked in paediatric wards where hot drinks are banned to prevent spills and scalds, this is the right thing to do.

    Finally, how many office based staff will have a hot drink at their desk? Why should they be treated differently from front line staff?

    This is another poorly applied knee her reaction aimed at appeasing the public whilst failing to address the real issues.

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Why just hot drinks? Close the restaurants, ban hospital staff from eating. Close staff toilets as well. Let's please the public at the expense of frontline NHS staff.

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Tell them to f*** off and have a cuppa if you wish. Such acts of bullying must not be tolerated

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous

    In reply to Anonymous:

    If they want to give the impression that NHS staff is working hard, they need to get  enough staff to minimise the pressure on clinics which are overbooked, not to ban coffee ! They just can't see the elephant in the room .

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous

    In reply to Anonymous:

    If hot drinks are to be banned in public/clinical areas, does this mean we get protected bleep free breaks instead?  How exactly do they expect me to get through my night shift without a brew while I do my paper work?  

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous

    In reply to Anonymous:

    Having done many ED nights now I have wondered at how a cheeky shop floor tea break looks to those who have been sat on a trolley waiting to go somewhere for an hour or four, and I do think a little bit of thought is required over and above a "sod you I'm busy" mentality. Having said that nothing short of an actual cardiac arrest stops me from taking 5 in the staff room if I feel I need it, and that's on top of my EWTD breaks. It's bad management to expect staff to work without break, and far from heroic  for staff to try and do so IMHO.

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Let these good people have their hot drinks and breaks, they all work extremely hard under very difficult circumstances. Most patients and visitors have no idea how hard the NHS staff work.