NHS: Rural Areas

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 18th October 2022.

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Photo of Anne Marie Morris Anne Marie Morris Conservative, Newton Abbot

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps her Department is taking to address rural workforce shortages.

Photo of Robert Jenrick Robert Jenrick Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

There are currently over 30,000 additional staff working in National Health Service provider trusts and commissioning bodies compared to July 2021, including a further 3,500 doctors and 9,100 nurses. We aim to deliver 50,000 nurses by the end of March 2024, with over 29,000 additional nurses working in the NHS now compared to September 2019. We also funded an increase of 1,500 undergraduate medical school places each year for domestic students in England and delivered five new medical schools in England.

The Department has also commissioned NHS England to develop a long-term workforce plan. The plan will review the roles and staff numbers required, including in rural areas and the actions and reforms needed to improve recruitment and retention.

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