NHS recruitment is “running to a standstill”

The
NHS is "running to standstill" in its attempts to employ enough
nurses, the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) has warned.

The
Office of Manpower Economics workforce survey for nursing staff, midwives and
health visitors asked all NHS trusts in England
and Wales
to submit information on staffing.

Figures
for 2003 showed that one in 10 nurses left the health service. The ‘wastage
rate’ – the number of staff leaving excluding transfers to other trusts – was
9.8 per cent. The number of newly qualified nursing staff joining was 10 per
cent.

The
RCN said the Government had to improve measures to keep nurses. While there is
encouraging news with increases in more students joining the profession, 25 per
cent of the most experienced nurses will be eligible for retirement in the next
five years, according to the college.

However,
the Department of Health said there were more nurses and fewer vacancies in the
NHS than ever before, and that with a workforce of 1.3 million, staff turnover
was inevitable.

Overseas
nurses are helping to fill the gap in numbers and now account for around one in
four nurses, according to the latest figures.

For
an interview with Andrew Foster, NHS HR director, go to www.personneltoday.com/goto/25041

By Mike Berry

 

 

 

 

 

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