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Plummeting NHS nursing levels creating more demand for umbrella workers

Paystream News

Paystream

Wednesday 17th Jan, 2018

Umbrella company nurses are in more demand than ever at the moment, with new data revealing just how desperate the NHS's need for extra nurses is.

According to statistics provided to BBC News by NHS Digital, the number of nurses leaving the profession each year now outnumbers the number starting to train to join the health service annually, leaving the NHS with a significant staffing gap.

The figures show that one in ten nurses quits the NHS a year on average, with more than 33,000 exiting the profession in the past 12 months, marking a rise of 20 per cent since the 2012-13 period.

While retirement naturally accounts for some of this, the growing pressures being placed on the NHS are behind other nurses' decisions to leave, with many believing more funding is desperately needed to support hospitals, patients and healthcare workers so that the highest possible standard of care can be provided at all times.

Speaking to BBC News, Janet Davies, Head of the Royal College of Nursing, commented: "The government must lift the NHS out of this dangerous and downward spiral.

"We are haemorrhaging nurses at precisely the time when demand has never been higher. The next generation of British nurses aren't coming through, just as the most experienced nurses are becoming demoralised and leaving."

As a result, this is creating plenty of opportunities for nurses who work on a locum basis as umbrella company contractors. Agency nursing work is often well-remunerated, which can help nurses to feel more valued for the work that they are doing and, with the NHS nursing shortage increasing rapidly, there are typically plenty of shifts available for umbrella nurses to choose from.

Indeed, new data from Jobfeed shows that the number of vacancies for temporary workers posted online rose by 17 per cent from 2015-16 to 2016-17, equating to an overall total of 520 nursing openings for every 100,000 members of the UK population.

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