Tories have done nothing about nursing shortage – for nearly THREE YEARS

[Image: Daily Mirror.]

[Image: Daily Mirror.]

Here’s an interesting news story, published less than a day ago (at time of writing) by the BBC:

The Department of Health has been criticised over a shortage of nurses and told to “get its act together”, by government advisers.

The Migration Advisory Committee also accused the health sector of seeing immigration as a “get-out-of-jail-free-card” and an answer to the shortage.

The lack of nurses is down to factors “which could and should have been anticipated”, it said.

(Source: Government should ‘get its act together’ over nursing shortage – BBC News )

Now look at this, from the Nursing Times in June 2013 – yes, that’s right – 2013:

The NHS will experience a chronic shortage of nurses within the next three years as demand for services continues to pile on pressure.

This is the dire warning from the government-backed Centre for Workforce Intelligence, which has predicted the NHS is likely to have 47,500 fewer nurses than it needs by 2016.

The analysis will make bleak reading for members of the profession who have already been reporting growing staff shortages in their care settings, as trusts seek to trim paybills in an effort to balance their books.

It also comes shortly after fresh concerns that the health service is failing to provide more care into the community and is experiencing unsustainable demand on accident and emergency departments as a result.

The CfWI looked at a range of projections and likely scenarios over the next three years, based on factors such as the number of nurses due to retire, the number of students being educated and expected demand for services.

“Employers have a real challenge to plan and sustain the supply and demand of the future nursing workforce at a time of financial constraint,” the CfWI report warned.

It concluded that the most likely scenario would see a 47,545 shortage of registered nurses by 2016, created by a 5% drop in the supply of nurses and a 3% increase in demand.

Although this was considered the most likely outcome, the centre noted a range of possible scenarios based on its predictions. These ranged from a nursing shortage of 0.6% by 2016 to one of 11%.

This 11% worst case scenario would see a shortage of around 190,000 nurses, as we revealed in February when some of the initial findings from the research were shared with Nursing Times.

(Source: NHS to face chronic nurse shortage by 2016 | Nursing Times )

According to The Independent, the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC)report estimated that 9.4 per cent of nursing places in England are currently vacant – so the Nursing Times prediction of 11 per cent was more or less accurate.

Using NT figures, we can see that the shortage totals around 163,000 nursing places.

No wonder the NHS is falling apart under Jeremy Hunt.

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8 thoughts on “Tories have done nothing about nursing shortage – for nearly THREE YEARS

  1. Dez

    Makes a nonsense of having a centre of workforce intelligence with experts advising on long term strategy and no one acting upon it. However what we now have is a nice little earner for lots of nursing and medical agency staff filling the gap with god knows what in terms of professionally vetted english speaking quality staff. Even UK nurses are liking the higher wages and flexible hours agency offer them. The agency on-costs (read lucrative profit margins and massive budget staff overspends) are a substantial part of the over budget stop gap situation which looks to be part of a covert privitisation move from our old slimy reptile friend…..that Hunt.
    Why can we not go back to the old style student nurses where youngsters learnt on the job with day release to get their qualifications would seem to be an ideal candidate for an apprentice scheme …and if a higher career is sought go on for higher university quallifications.

  2. Larry Semmins

    I’m pretty sure Dave and his mates will have statistics to prove the exact opposite and these will be the statistics that the media will run with. Even if Jeremy asks the question, Dave will shout some crap at him with his baying cronies and once again this will be the media perception. I do wish there was a better way of piercing this strategy, this article shows the task we are facing

  3. Barry Davies

    This has been evident for longer than three years, Nursing realised that it had an ageing workforce many years ago but unfortunately didn’t want to admit that because of the migration to university education the numbers of student had dropped dramatically, and continually claimed more nurses than ever were in training however they only meant since the transition in education had occurred there are far less than under traditional training, add to that the attrition rate after qualification, and you get the idea that homegrown numbers would drop. Now due to cameron wanting to ebb the flow of migrants we have to look at 27 nations rather than the whole world for staff, and can not get the numbers we used to. To say it was a foreseeable problem is being moderate about the whole situation.

  4. gfranklinpercival

    Just so long as they understand that they and their city chums will be disappointed when all are made jointly and severally liable for the recovery of our assets. Seems a waste of time, but we have no other argument at the moment unless we take to the streets.

  5. Malcolm MacINTYRE-READ

    The mention in the Migration Advisory Committee’s report re: the scandal that NHS management should have acted on known problems years ago is, to the best of my knowledge, the first time that an official body has gone public on what has been painfully obvious for a couple of decades at least… and mentioned again on last night’s (25/03) Radio 4 Question Time… being the appalling lack of management skills in the NHS.

    In my opinion it was worsened, if not started, by Sir David Nicholson, first in his roll as CEO of the Mid-Staffs death hospital and then extended while he was CEO of NHS England… before being allowed to drift off into a VERY comfortable, publicly funded retirement, instead of brought to account for the deaths and the horror of a management culture based on blame, fear and the extermination of whistleblowers.

    And they is still there, as entrenched as ever, continuing to screw up the clinical responsibilities and patient safety.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      Be careful when you discuss Mid Staffs. Total number of preventable deaths there was around one, according to the final report.

    2. Barry Davies

      it is people continually repeating the lies which Cameron also did at the 2015 tory party conference about preventable deaths at Staffrd hospital that is aiding the tories in privatising the NHS. The Death rate was in fact less than the national average, and the whole myth was created as a means of taking away vital services from Stafford to fund the PFI debts in Stoke. now Stafford and surrounds have been left with a far worse service and north staffs also because stoke hospital can not cope with the increase in patients, it does not now and never has had the capacity because when it was built it had less capacity than the two hospitals in stoke it replaced. To repeat the lies and make a statement the mid staffs death hospital is libellous to say the least.

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