NHS doctors and nurses numbers at 15-year high

The government has claimed that there are more doctors and nurses working in the NHS than at any time in the past 15 years, following the release of new figures.

The new statistics show that in the last six months the number of nurses in NHS Trusts has increased by 9,000 and the number of GPs and Consultants by almost 1,500.

The figures are as a result of a census carried out for the six months between September 2002 and March 2003. It also shows that there has been an increase of 950 hospital consultants, 507 GPs and 89 trainee GPs.

The figures also show that there are 1,000 more allied health professionals working in the NHS since September 2002.

Welcoming the figures, John Hutton said: "These figures show that we are seeing a steady, year-on-year improvement in the number of doctors and nurses and other frontline healthcare staff working within the NHS. This is directly related to the record levels of resources being invested into the service.

"Expanding and increasing the workforce is vital if we are to build a modern NHS capable of treating patients with the speed and efficiency they deserve. But we are not complacent and that is why we are continuing to make the NHS an attractive place to work."

Sarah Mullally, Chief Nursing Officer said that it was "very good news for nursing".

She added: "Nurses and their colleagues on local recruitment teams can celebrate their success in working across clinical teams and patient services, higher education and Workforce Development Confederations – which has built up and maintained a skilled NHS workforce for local health needs."


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