Government Must Not Ignore NHS Recruitment Crisis

West Cumbrian MP, Jamie Reed, has warned that the Government must not ignore the ongoing recruitment crisis in the NHS.  This comes as the NHS regulator, NHS Improvement, have reported that there is now a shortage of 15,000 nurses in England’s hospitals.

Jamie Reed MP has long warned the Government of the consequences of their refusal to intervene to ease the ongoing recruitment crisis and he has also worked closely with North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust and the University of Central Lancashire to develop plans to ‘grow our own’ medical staff in West Cumbria.

Staff shortages are particularly acute in Cumbria due to local recruitment challenges.  The lack of staff has been highlighted as an underlining reason for the ongoing challenges at North Cumbria University Trust.  This was cited by the report into mortality rates by Sir Bruce Keogh.

A recent report by the Care Quality Commission revealed the scale of the shortages at the Trust:

“The recruitment of nursing staff also remained an on-going challenge.  At the time of our inspection nurse staffing levels, although improved, were still of concern and there was a heavy reliance on staff working extra shifts and on bank and agency staff to maintain staffing levels.  There were times when the wards were not appropriately staffed to meet the needs of patients.”

The report also rightly praised the hard-work and dedication of staff at the Trust:

“Services were delivered by caring and compassionate staff.  Staff treated patients with dignity and respect.  Care was planned and delivered in a way that took into account the wishes of the patients.  Staff were mindful of patient’s individual fears and anxieties and offered appropriate emotional and psychological support to patients who were anxious or worried.”

Copeland MP, Jamie Reed said:

“More and more people are queueing up to warn the Government over the worsening NHS recruitment crisis.  I have written to Ministers time and time again and their inction is shameful.

“Our doctors and nurses work incredibly hard in extremely trying circumstances.  Their commitment to their patients has been rightly praised by the Care Quality Commission.  Every one of us relies on the NHS at some time or other and to every member of staff that gives their all, often work extra hours unpaid and keep our services running, I say thank you.

“Ministers are making it harder to train staff in the UK, potentially making it harder to recruit staff from overseas.

“In West Cumbria, we are working hard to ensure we can train medics locally, but this will take time and the Government has to get a grip on this worsening crisis now.”