NHS staffing numbers

NHS staff numbers

Source: NHS Workforce Statistics in England, Medical and Dental staff – 2004-2014

The NHS in England employs nearly 1.2 million full-time equivalent staff. This number has been increasing at about 1.3 per cent per year for the past decade.

As working practices and skill mixes have changed, so has the make-up of the NHS workforce. Since 2009, there has been an increase in all staff groups apart from managers. The number of managers has decreased by more than 17 per cent while there have been modest increases in the number of GPs (2.3 per cent), nursing staff (2.5 per cent) and ambulance staff (2.8 per cent) compared to bigger increases in the number of scientific, technical and therapeutic staff (5.6 per cent) and consultants (16.7 per cent).

Though the number of nursing staff shows a modest increase over the medium term, more recent numbers have helped this increase. The increase reflects the individual decisions of trusts to boost numbers of nurses in the wake of various reports on the quality of care provided by the NHS (The Keogh Mortality Review; Berwick review into patient safety; The Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Public Inquiry).

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