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26.06.20

NHS workforce statistics demonstrate rise in staffing numbers

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has praised the increase in NHS staffing numbers, after the recently published monthly NHS workforce data for up to the end of March 2020 by NHS Digital showed a significant rise in numbers.

Compared to last year, the number of nurses in the NHS increased by 12,131, while the number of doctors had risen by 6,629 in the same period.

The data recorded 294,553 nurses as working in the NHS in March 2020, compared with 282,422 the previous year. The number of doctors, meanwhile, rose from 112,031 in March 2019 to 118,660 in March of this year.

With the UK government having pledged to deliver 50,000 more nurses by the end of their term, the figures will have been a welcome sign of progress. The figures for March do not include any former healthcare professionals who volunteered to return to the frontline to support the NHS during the coronavirus pandemic, as they began to be deployed from April onwards.

There are also over 23,100 more doctors in the NHS and over 22,000 more nurses, midwives and health visitors compared with workforce figures from 2010.

Responding to the statistics, Mr Hancock said: “It’s fantastic to see record numbers of NHS staff, including 6,000 more doctors and 12,000 more nurses compared to last year.

“Thanks to the hard work and dedication of our NHS staff, we are turning the tide on coronavirus, and I remain absolutely committed to growing the workforce and making the NHS the best possible place to work.

“We will continue to do everything we can to attract and retain our brilliant NHS staff as part of delivering 50,000 more nurses by end of the Parliament.”

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