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Press release

The King’s Fund responds to the Health and Care Bill workforce vote

Commenting on MPs voting against a plan to require the publication of health and care workforce projections, Richard Murray, Chief Executive of The King’s Fund, said:

‘The amendment tabled by Jeremy Hunt MP was supported by MPs from across the political divide and was backed by more than 60 health and care organisations. It was an opportunity for the government to make concrete its commitment to health and care workforce planning, but sadly it is an opportunity missed.

‘Years of poor planning and short-term thinking has left health and care services struggling to cope with chronic staff shortages. The amendment would have addressed this by encouraging a more strategic, long-term approach based on the regular publication of future workforce projections.

‘Despite pledges, promises and manifesto commitments there is still no plan to address workforce shortages, and there is no certainty about the budgets for staff education and training. The health and care workforce crisis continues to be a blind spot for the government.

‘We hope this issue will be taken up by peers when the Health and Care Bill moves to the House of Lords, especially given the strength of feeling expressed by MPs today and the widespread backing for this clause from across the health and care sector.’

Notes to editors

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The King's Fund is an independent charity working to improve health and care in England. We help to shape policy and practice through research and analysis; develop individuals, teams and organisations; promote understanding of the health and social care system; and bring people together to learn, share knowledge and debate. Our vision is that the best possible health and care is available to all.