Local hubs needed to address NHS staffing shortage

A new report outlines a need for urgent investment in local training hubs to meet health and care staffing shortages.

Woman in bed with ventilator and nurse in PPE


“Employer hubs” need to be set up across England to bring together local NHS organisations and further education colleges to collaborate on courses and building a pipeline for the local recruitment of health and care staff, according to a new report.

The report from the NHS Confederation and the Independent Commission says further investment in training is vital if the NHS staffing shortage is to be met. It outlines how hubs would enable local people to enter or progress careers in health and care, including through recruitment, upskilling and retraining.

There are around 90,000 NHS vacancies, on top of more than 120,000 in social care.

The report, Creating the workforce of the future, also calls on the Government to invest £5m over two years to pilot employer hubs in each of the seven NHS regions in England to help NHS and care organisations’ recruitment and training,  support the creation of a Health and Care College Council in England, with £2m funding over three years to create a national council to promote, develop and embed the essential contribution of colleges in education and training pipelines in England and embed the role of colleges in the local delivery of the national NHS People Plan.

Danny Mortimer, deputy chief executive of the NHS Confederation, and chief executive of NHS Employers, said: “The Government’s commitment to level up the country, tackle regional inequalities and solve the workforce crisis across health and social care will fall flat without targeted action to improve supply including investment in colleges to support local upskilling, retraining and recruitment into these vital roles.

“Over the course of the pandemic, the spotlight has shone bright on the hard work and dedication of key workers, highlighting how essential they are to the health and wealth of their communities. The pandemic has also starkly highlighted a number of underlying issues, which if we are to attract more people into NHS and social care roles, must be addressed without delay.”


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