Nurses and midwives and consultants at record high


Qualified nurses and midwives and consultants are at record levels in Scotland, latest statistics show.

Figures published today by ISD Scotland show that the number of whole-time-equivalent (WTE) qualified nursing and midwife staff has increased by 1,654.4 since September 2006 – an increase of 4 per cent. There are now 42,680.6 WTE qualified nurses and midwives working in NHS Scotland, making it the largest group of staff.

Numbers of consultants is also at a record level. There are now 4,769.7 WTE medical and dental consultants in the NHS – a 31.2 per cent increase of 1,133.2 since September 2006.

Total NHS workforce (excluding GPs and GDS) has increased by 2,420.4 WTE posts since last March to a total of 135,625.7 posts – an increase of 1.8 per cent.

Total NHS staff numbers have increased by 8,563.9 WTE since September 2006 – a rise of 6.7 per cent. Nursing and midwifery staff numbers have increased 2.4 per cent over the same period.

Health Secretary Alex Neil said: “Under this government, NHS staff numbers have risen considerably, and today we can confirm that they continue to rise, with record levels of qualified nurses and midwives, and record levels of consultants delivering care for the people of Scotland this year.

“These figures demonstrate this government’s commitment to deliver quality patient care for the people of Scotland through a strong investment in the NHS workforce.

“This government understands that you cannot give people the high quality health care they deserve without making sure there are people on the ground to do the job.

“Increasing staff numbers is a key part of that, but it’s also important that they’re in the right place at the right time. That’s why we have also introduced mandatory nursing workforce planning tools, to help health boards plan for the number of staff they need.”