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More nurses and midwives working in NHS than ever

More nurses and midwives working in NHS than ever
By Jess Hacker
26 January 2024

There are more nurses and midwives working in the NHS than ever before in the services history, new data has shown.

According to NHS England data for November, 372,411 nurses and midwives are working in the NHS in England, meaning there are 20,000 more in the workforce compared to last winter.

And the number of midwives has grown by more than 1,100 to 23,396 in the last year.

It comes after NHS England opened new routes into the professions and expanded international recruitment, including NHS England funding retention programmes in every maternity unit in England and additional in-year investment of up to £4 million to accelerate the number of Professional Midwifery and Nurse Advocates.

Chief nursing officer for England Dame Ruth May said: ‘It’s good to see today’s figures which show growth in these roles across the NHS. Of course, we still have some way to go which is why it is vital we continue to build our workforce as set out in the NHS Long Term Workforce Plan – through increasing the number of future nurses and midwives in training and improving retention. Key to this is improving the experiences of our colleagues who work so hard to provide patients and the public with the very best care.’

NHS England also announced hospitals across the country have rolled out 5,000 additional permanent, staffed beds this winter.

New figures have shown that last week hospitals had an average of 99,750 core beds in place each day, up 2,000 since the start of the year, intended to align with the expected peak in Covid and flu admissions.

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