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Nursing has topped the chart as the most trusted profession in Britain for the fourth year running, gaining unanimous backing from the public irrespective of their political points of view.
Results from the latest Ipsos Mori Veracity Index found that 95% of the public trust nurses – very close to their 2018 score of 96%.
“Nurses are the backbone of the NHS”
Dame Donna Kinnair
The annual survey, which has been undertaken every year since 1983, asks more than 1,000 people which professions they trust the most.
Nurses have held the top spot since being added to the list in 2016.
In this year’s survey, trust in nursing was found to be consistently high across people’s political leanings.
Nurses were the most trusted profession in both the leading political parties – 95% of Conservatives and 97% of Labour supporters feel that they could put their faith in them.
Nursing scores were similarly high in both sides of the Brexit campaign.
Of those who voted leave in the 2016 European Union referendum, 94% would put their faith in nurses, as would 95% of those who voted remain.
Overall, nurses pipped doctors to the post, who were a close second with 93% public trust, and dentists, who scored 90%.
They also beat teachers, engineers, professors and scientists.
Among the lower ranking jobs there were bankers (43%), business leaders (35%) and estate agents (30%).
The lowest scoring profession was politicians, with only 14% of Britons saying that they trust them.
Given the upcoming general election, and healthcare and nursing shortages being a major talking point, the Royal College of Nursing greeted survey results warmly.
Chief executive and general secretary of the RCN, Dame Donna Kinnair, said: “Nurses are the backbone of the NHS, and more widely, health and social care in the UK.
“As the profession that tops this poll once again it’s no surprise that, when a general election is called, politicians are keen to meet as many nurses as they can, in hospitals and in the community.”
Dame Donna noted that trust was “essential” for nurses to build relationships with patients, and that nurses knew not to take their position lightly.
She said: “It’s why so many people have joined nurses in signing a petition calling for safe staffing levels to be enshrined in law.
“The public realise when nurses say the NHS can’t afford to wait to fill in longstanding staff shortages, they aren’t crying wolf.”