14 November 2018
Embargo: 00.01hrs Thursday 15 November 2018
UNISON comments on health think-tank joint briefing into staffing shortfall in the NHS
Commenting on the latest joint briefing by the King’s Fund, the Health Foundation and the Nuffield Trust into shortages of staff in the NHS, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “This briefing reminds us all of the damage inflicted on the NHS by the repeated failure to plan, fund and support the health and care workforce.
“Instead of investing in staffing, ministers introduced restrictive immigration policies and cut training budgets, all of which end up costing the NHS more than necessary in the long term. Even potential solutions such as using apprenticeship routes to boost future nurse numbers are made unmanageable due to cumbersome government regulations and processes.
“Despite the truly alarming turnover due to poor working conditions in the social care sector, care workers continue to be ignored and exploited.
“If ministers are serious about securing the future of the NHS, they should invest in apprenticeships, identify the skills and training needed in social care and make professional development an option for all across health and social care.
Notes to editors:
– UNISON is the UK’s largest union, with more than 1.3 million members providing public services – in education, local government, the NHS, police service and energy. They are employed in both the public and private sectors.