Patients' care is being put at risk because of the way nurses are having to do mandatory training outside of working hours, it has been claimed.

Linda du Preez, a representative from the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) East Kent branch, told delegates at the RCN's annual congress in Harrogate that increased caseloads mean nurses often do not have the time to complete training courses during their working day, reported nursingtimes.net.

She said: "This is putting patients at risk if nurses are unable to complete their mandatory training in working hours. Protected time must be allocated by employers for nurses to do it in their work time."

Delegates at the RCN conference tabled a resolution requesting that the organisation put pressure on employers regarding the issue; almost 99 per cent of voters approved the motion.

This request for nurses to be given more time to complete crucial training comes in the same week as a study by the National Diabetes Inpatient Audit, which found that one in three hospital patients with diabetes in England and Wales are victims of medication errors, according to independent.co.uk.

Diabetes UK chief executive Barbara Young said the situation was "not good enough", but accepted that steps have been taken to provide healthcare staff with more training on how to look after people with diabetes.

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