Health written question – answered on 25th November 2013.

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Photo of Helen Jones Helen Jones Shadow Minister (Home Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he is taking to increase the number of physiotherapists working in the NHS; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Daniel Poulter Daniel Poulter The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

Health Education England (HEE) is committed to ensuring that we have a work force in the right numbers, with the right skills, values and behaviours to deliver high quality care for patients.

To this end HEE has recently published the first comprehensive work force planning guidance, setting out a clear and transparent process for the system. During the year each employer will have shared their forecast needs with regard to the future work force with their Local Education and Training Board (LETB). The LETBs have used these forecasts as the basis for conversations with commissioners and other local stakeholders, before developing their work force investment plans and submitting them to HEE. HEE is now in the process of aggregating and assuring these 13 plans.

HEE reports that the strategic health authorities’ forecasts indicate there would be 1,511 newly qualified physiotherapists in 2013-14 from the commissions they decided in 2009; this represents approximately 8% of the work force.

For future years, the initial Workforce Investment Plan for England will set out the education commissions we intend to make with universities, including physiotherapy commissions, for places commencing in September 2014, and subject to the approval of HEE's board, they will publish this on 5 December.

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