NHS: Part-time Employment

Department of Health written question – answered on 23rd February 2015.

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Photo of Lord Turnberg Lord Turnberg Labour

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Earl Howe on 10 February (HL4453), what plans they have to encourage NHS Trusts to employ and re-employ experienced medical staff who wish to practice part-time towards the end of their careers.

Photo of Earl Howe Earl Howe The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

It is for local National Health Service organisations to decide how many and what staff they employ, and they are best placed to do this based on the needs of their patients and local communities.

Health Education England (HEE) is responsible for ensuring the NHS workforce has the right numbers, skills, values and behaviours to meet the needs of patients.

HEE will work with NHS Employers and other key partners to develop a more strategic and cost-effective approach to staff retention including the encouragement of greater employer focus on retaining and investing in their current staff.

To support nursing workforce requirements, HEE announced on 29 September 2014 that it is putting £4.7 million into training resources over the next three years as part of a major national campaign that will allow former nurses to return to the workforce.

Over 1,000 have entered Return to Practice programmes this year. These programmes fast track experienced nurses back into the NHS in 3-6 months, compared to 3-4 years training new nurses.

HEE is working with NHS England, the British Medical Association and the Royal College of General Practitioners to standardise a funded scheme which allows general practitioners to return to United Kingdom general practice following a career break. This is anticipated to be launched at the end of March.

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