NHS: Temporary Employment

Department of Health written question – answered on 16th June 2015.

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Photo of Margaret Hodge Margaret Hodge Labour, Barking

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how much was spent on agency staff (a) in Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust, (b) across London and (c) in England in each of the last four (i) quarters and (ii) years.

Photo of Alistair Burt Alistair Burt The Minister of State, Department of Health

The information requested is shown in the following tables.

Spending on agency staff over the last four years:

Organisation

Total Agency Spend (£ million)

2013-14

2012-13

2011-12

2010-11

(a) Barking, Havering and Redbridge

University Hospitals Trust

27

n/a

n/a

n/a

(b) London

- National Health Service trusts

334

n/a

n/a

n/a

- Foundation trusts

366

273

229

205

(c) England

- NHS trusts

1,082

n/a

n/a

n/a

- Foundation trusts

1,396

1,113

918

855

Spending on agency staff over the last four quarters.

Organisation

Total Agency Spend (£ million)

Q1 2014-15

Q2 2014-15

Q3 2014-15

Q4 2014-15

(a) Barking, Havering and Redbridge

University Hospitals Trust

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

(b) London

NHS trusts

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

Foundation trusts

95.7

101.9

107.3

111.6

(c) England

NHS trusts

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

Foundation trusts

388.7

428.4

448.2

504.9

n/a: data not available

Notes:

1. Data on net spending on contract and agency staff for NHS trusts (including Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust) is unaudited financial data taken from the NHS Summarisation Schedules and consolidated figures were published in the Department’s Annual Report and Accounts. These data were collected for the first time in 2013/14.

2. The figures for NHS trusts exclude spending on bank staff. Data on temporary/agency staff reported in the Department’s Annual Report and Accounts include payments to external bodies such as NHS Professionals for the supply of bank staff, working extra hours at NHS rates of pay. The above table presents data excluding spending on bank staff using unaudited figures for the element of NHS trust expenditure relating to bank staff.

3. NHS trusts existing in 2013/14 were asked to also provide prior year figures (2012/13) for Contract and Agency staff in the NHS Summarisation Schedules. These figures have not been included in the answer as the data provided only includes information from existing 2013/14 NHS trusts, rather than data from all 2012/13 trusts.

4. The prior year figures included in Table C12 of the published accounts have not been included in the answer, as they were compiled on a different basis to the 2013/14 figures. The figures published for 2012/13 for NHS trusts are based on non-permanently employed staff which is defined as “others engaged on the objectives of the organisation and will include staff on inward secondment or loan from other organisations, bank/agency/temporary staff and contract staff.” This reconciles to the figures for those organisations in note 3 (Staff Costs 2012/13), whereas the 2013/14 figures are compiled for the first time under a stricter definition of contingent labour.

5. The figure for 2013/14 Contract and Agency spend staff for all NHS trusts reported in the published accounts under the heading “Temporary/Agency” (Table C12 page 197) is £1.184 billion. This is understated as one organisation did not provide the data, so the answer is based on a higher figure (including spend on bank staff) of £1.209 billion.

6. In the guidance that accompanied the data collection, the definition of Contract / Agency staff is: “Agency” employee payments for the employment of staff where the staff remain employees of the agency and “Contract staff” where the NHS trust has control over numbers and qualifications of staff (in contrast to a service obtained under contract) .

7. Excluded from the “Agency/Contract” category are the costs of staff recharged by another organisation where no element of overhead is included i.e. where the staff costs are shared between the NHS trust and other bodies; staff on secondment or on loan from other organisations; amounts payable to contractors in respect of the provision of services (for example, cleaning or security).

8. Where an NHS trust obtains foundation trust status part way through any year, the data provided is only for the part of the year the organisation operated as an NHS trust.

9. For the first time in 2013/14 the figures for NHS trusts and foundation trusts have been aggregated and published in the Departmental Annual Accounts together under the heading “NHS Providers”. Figures provided separately for either sector will include a small amount of cross-sector transactions that would ordinarily be eliminated if the figures were provided at group level.

10. Data on net spending on agency staff presented for foundation trusts for last four years is audited data from in-year returns of NHS foundation trusts.

11. Data on net spending on agency staff presented for foundation trusts for last four quarters is unaudited data from in-year returns of NHS foundation trusts. It comprises spending on agency and contract staff.

12. Annual data is based on published accounts data. 2014/15 data is expected to be published next month. Quarterly data for 2014/15 is drawn from unpublished in-year returns.

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