Proposals to cut the NHS workforce in England by up to 10% in the next five years have been rejected by the government, who claim the NHS need more staff, not less.
Consultancy firm McKinsey and Company advised the Department of Health in September 2009 that the loss of 137,000 clinical and administration posts would save around £20 billion by 2014. The report also recommended a recruitment freeze to begin within two years, with the possibility of medical school places being reduced, and also suggested an early retirement programme should be established.
However, Health Minister Mike O’Brien said, “Ministers have rejected the suggested proposals in the McKinsey report and there are no plans to adopt these proposals in the future”, claiming that certain services, particularly maternity, nursing and primary care, need more staff rather than fewer.
McKinsey also claimed that up to £3 billion a year could be saved by improving staff productivity, while nearly £2 billion could be saved on external contracts for areas such as food and waste.
Further reading - An in-depth analysis of the UK pharmaceutical market, including some background information on healthcare personnel, is available from Espicom: The Pharmaceutical Market: United Kingdom (published June 2009)