We’ve become used to shoddy journalism in the Herald these days but this from Martin Williams, Senior New Reporter, is special.
There is a crisis in some parts of NHS England. I feel sure that much of what is in this report is true in those parts but there is no evidence for it in any part of Scotland.
Why is it unlikely to be true here? 50% more nurses per head of population, Covid bed occupancy at only 50% of capacity and ICU bed occupancy at only 17% of capacity.
THE majority of Scottish nurses are willing to take strike action while feeling undervalued by government with one in three forced to skip meals to feed their family or to save money during the coronavirus crisis. That is the “shocking” conclusion of a new study which exposes a worsening crisis during the Covid-19 pandemic in Scotland with nearly all frontline key workers saying they are suffering mental health issues.
This is fake news. None of it is true and he knows that, I’m sure. What’s shocking, for the rest of us, is the Herald’s willingness to use and to headline it. Remember:
This study is reported with no details of how many nurses actually responded, how many nurses there are so what sample size that means, how they were contacted or how the questions were worded.
‘The survey details were shared with the Herald by grassroot (sic) health worker support group (sic) Nurses United and Nursing Notes.’
The study is not published, not even mentioned, at the websites of either of these groups, membership not stated.
Why is it just shared with a newspaper with the full report unavailable?
The responses ‘from hundreds of Scots nurses‘ Tells you they don’t want you to know how few, that it was less than 900 or ‘nearly a thousand‘ and more than 200.
There are 60 000 nurses and midwives in NHS Scotland:
See how easy it is to reference the evidence, Mr Williams, if you have any that is.
Let’s be charitable and say they had 500 responses. That’s less than 1% in a self-selecting sample. Utterly unreliable or, as we former researchers used to say, ‘mince.’
So, once you know that, all of the ‘shocking’ percentages go into the mincer too.
Of course, Williams knows all of this. He just doesn’t care. I worry.