NHS staff shortages and delayed transfer of care

While official figures on Delayed Transfers of Care, or DTOC, are said to be nearing national target levels, the situation in Cambridgeshire has been bad enough to warrant an inspection by the Care Quality Commission – expected in the autumn.

"Beneath immediate fire-fighting and the critical need to streamline health and social care services lies a deep-rooted gap in our workforce,” says Cllr Susan van de Ven.

“About 20% of our nurses and carers come from overseas, and about half the international workforce is from the EU – figures rising the Cambridge area,” said Susan.

“Since the Referendum we’ve seen a near total collapse in EU nurses seeking to work in the UK.”

Both Cambs NHS and central government are now having to invest in recruitment of nurses - and GPs - from countries like India and the Philippines.

Furthermore, reliance on nursing and social care agency staff adds to intolerable financial pressures.

The workforce gap is not just related to a failure to ‘grow our own’.  In Cambridgeshire this is an outcome of lack of truly affordable homes and absence of public transport for many areas.

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