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Mental Health Services: Hospital Beds

Health written question – answered on 10th January 2008.

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Photo of Anne Milton Anne Milton Shadow Minister (Health)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 12 December 2007, Official Report, column 655W, on mental health services: hospital beds, how many community psychiatric nurses were practising in the NHS in each year since 1997; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Ivan Lewis Ivan Lewis Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health) (Care Services)

The number of qualified nursing staff in the community psychiatry area of work in England is shown in the following table.

National health service hospital and community health services: qualified nursing staff in the community psychiatry area of work in England
As at September England
1997 9,736
1998 10,231
1999 10,552
2000 11,080
2001 12,224
2002 12,292
2003 13,173
2004 14,909
2005 15,844
2006(1) 17,076
(1 )More accurate validation processes in 2006 have resulted in the identification and removal of 9,858 duplicate non-medical staff records out of the total workforce figure of 1.3 million in 2006. Earlier years' figures could not be accurately validated in this way and so will be slightly inflated. The level of inflation in earlier years' figures is estimated to be less than 1 per cent. of total across all non-medical staff groups for headcount figures (and negligible for full-time equivalents). This should be taken into consideration when analysing trends over time.


Workforce planning is a matter for local NHS organisations to deal with. They are best placed to assess the health needs of their local health community. The number of community psychiatric nurses has increased by 75 per cent. since 1997.


The Information Centre for health and social care Non- Medical Workforce Census.

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