Managing the supply of NHS clinical staff in England Contents


The NHS employs around 824,000 clinical staff, including doctors, nurses, midwives and allied health professionals, such as physiotherapists. Clinical staff cost around £43 billion each year to employ and account for around half of NHS providers’ costs.

The Department of Health (the Department) is ultimately accountable for securing value for money from spending on health services, including on training and employing clinical staff. Health Education England is responsible for providing leadership and oversight of workforce planning. It develops national and regional plans and commissions the training of new clinical staff. It spent £4.3 billion on training places in 2014–15 and 140,000 students are in clinical training at any one time. Healthcare providers, including NHS trusts and NHS foundation trusts, are responsible for employing staff and supporting clinical placements. Trusts are overseen by NHS Improvement, which brings together the NHS Trust Development Authority and Monitor.

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5 May 2016