In a first-of-its-kind attempt to deal with a staffing shortage following one of the most severe winters the institution has ever experienced, Britain unveiled a new workforce hiring strategy for the government-run National Health Service (NHS) in England.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, in his five-year priorities for the year, has delivered on his promise of cutting down patient waiting lists as the NHS endured a harsh winter crisis.
“This government is making the largest single expansion in NHS education and training in its history,” Sunak stated. “This is a plan for investment and a plan for reform.”
The NHS requires the government to invest 2.4 billion pounds ($3 billion) over the next five years, as there are about 112,000 vacancies, and by 2037, the gap could widen three times more.
The NHS aims to double medical school training places to 15,000, increasing the number of doctor training places and the number of adult nurse training places by 50% by 2031.
Although NHS staff were appreciated and recognized for their work treating the sick after the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been discontent due to inadequate staffing, which could grossly affect their ability to do their work efficiently.
The workforce intends to deal with some of the challenges brought on by treatment backlogs following the COVID-19 outbreak during the winter crisis. Ambulances formed a line outside the hospital as a result of the staff’s absence, making patient discharge difficult.
It was further said that the strategy intends to supply the NHS with an additional 60,000 physicians, 170,000 nurses, and 71,000 allied health workers by 2023–37, in addition to other initiatives aimed at staff retention.
“This is a truly historic day for the NHS in England,” NHS Chief Executive Amanda Pritchard stated. “Our first-ever NHS Long Term Workforce Plan now gives us a once-in-a-generation opportunity to put staffing on (a) sustainable footing for the years to come.”
Although Sunak confirmed that the second half of 2023 will witness a sharp increase in the overall waiting lists for treatment, the number of patients waiting for more than 18 months has drastically declined as there has been an improvement in ambulance response time.
- Published By Team Timeswire