NHS job vacancies in east of England rise by 13% from last year

Ipswich Hospital (stock image). Picture: PHIL MORLEY

Ipswich Hospital (stock image). Picture: PHIL MORLEY - Credit: Archant

NHS job vacancies in the east of England in the first quarter of 2017 have reached 8,612 - an increase of 13% on the year before.

New figures from Health Education England show a steady increase in the number of advertised jobs across the whole of the NHS from 78,112 in the first quarter of 2016 to 86,035 in 2017, a rise of 10%.

Nursing and midwifery has the highest number of vacancies in the east of England with 3,190 roles unfilled, with administrative and clerical second with 1,678.

Difficulty in hiring specialist staff and the lack of upcoming trained nurses may be contributing factors in the rising rate of NHS job vacancies

A spokeswoman for Ipswich Hospital said: “We are doing everything we can possibly do to make sure our staff recommend the hospital as a place to work and a place to train.

“We clearly recognise in some specialist areas there is a nationwide shortage of staff and this affects our vacancy numbers.

“On the whole we are extremely fortunate have such excellent and committed staff.”.

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Eileen Raynes-White, operational manager at Royal College of Nursing Eastern, said there were too few nurses coming through the training system and that ‘patient care is suffering’.

She said: “It is disappointing that at the very moment the NHS needs to be recruiting more nursing staff, we learn the number is falling and the NHS finds itself advertising for more jobs we know it cannot fill.

“The true number of unfilled jobs is far higher than the number of online adverts and stands at 40,000 nursing posts in England alone.

“In the Eastern region, the RCN has estimated that around 4,000 nursing posts are vacant.

“A lethal cocktail of factors is resulting in too few nurses and patient care is suffering.

“The Government desperately needs to keep the experienced staff still working in the NHS.

“More people are leaving nursing than joining - deterred by low pay, relentless pressure and new training costs.

“For the sake of patient safety, the Chancellor must scrap the cap on pay and help to fill the tens of thousands of vacant nurse jobs.

“The Government is holding pay below inflation and inflicting a real terms pay cut worth £3,000 per year. Too many now feel no alternative but to leave nursing.”