'NURSES deserve better pay'.

That's the feeling of scores of Echo readers amid a possible nursing strike.

This response comes as the Royal College of Nursing holds a ballot for the first time in its 106-year history, asking all of its UK members if they are prepared to walk out over pay.

Paying nurses a “decent wage” is the only way to prevent them leaving the NHS and to fill thousands of vacancies, the head of the Royal College of Nursing has said as the union ballots on strike action.

Nurses started voting on Thursday, October 6 and will continue until November 2.

More than 250 Echo readers responded to a post on the Bournemouth Echo Facebook page with the majority agreeing that nurses deserve better pay. 

These are some of the comments people gave on our Facebook page...

One commenter said: "Something needs to change! If this is what it takes then 100% so be it. Five years ago, I was totally burned out and gave up my hard earned registration, to work in Social care. I'm happier and being paid more now than I ever got as a staff nurse."

Another commented: "It’s very sad it has come to this, all nhs staff do a fab job and should get paid accordingly."

Another reader said: "100% pay should be increased. Without nurses the hospitals wouldn't function they are amazing at what they do, long hours and a pittance of pay and very little thanks."

Another said: "Nurses should be amongst our most treasured possessions, but they are treated little better than slaves, underpaid and overworked. We all became very generous and appreciative standing and clapping for them. Now is the time to back that appreciation with decent pay, conditions and rewards. Step up, speak up, support every rally, or be judged by your silence."

One more commenter said: I don't agree with all the strikes that have been going on, everyone wants more money and better conditions! But this is different, I 100% back this strike, they don't get any where near paid what they are worth and the conditions are terrible with covid, whatever they are asking for, give it to them."

However, some readers had opposing views...

One commenter said: "Where do we draw the line ? Seems to be never ending pay rises wanted by literally everyone. Who next ? Teachers, Bus Drivers, Police, Armed Forces ??? Not sure where it all ends and how we afford to pay it all."

Another reader said: "Good Nurses will never strike because they care about their patients and their colleagues. The Government should be sorting this out and not forcing the Nurses to strike to earn a decent wage, the NHS is in a bad state as it is so how can you encourage Nurses to strike when there is a shortage already. Lives could be lost if there are not enough Nurses to tend to the sick."

Another commented: "The problem is we have a duty of care and striking will cause the patients to suffer."