Press release

Health and Social Care Secretary responds to NHS workforce statistics

Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock responds to NHS workforce statistics demonstrating an increase in nurses and doctors.

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Compared to last year the number of nurses in the NHS has increased by 9,398 and the number of doctors has risen by 5,188, figures published today show.

In addition to this, as part of the ‘Your NHS Needs You’ recruitment drive, 15,266 former professionals in England have so far come forward to help the NHS tackle COVID-19 and will start being deployed from this weekend. This includes 5,117 doctors, 5,605 nurses and midwives and 3,686 allied health professionals and pharmacists.

From next week 5,750 final year medics and 17,000 final year nursing students in England will also be asked to consider moving into frontline placements, with appropriate support.

This means in total over 38,000 more people will join the NHS in the coming weeks, alongside over 560,000 volunteers who have signed up as part of the new NHS volunteer army helping vulnerable people stay safe and well at home.

Since 2010, there are over 20,200 more doctors in our NHS and almost 23,000 more nurses working on our wards.

Responding to NHS workforce statistics today, Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said:

We are more indebted than ever to the staff of the NHS. We go into this crisis with the NHS bigger than ever before, with more than 9,000 nurses compared to last year alone. I’m so proud that since our rallying call, 38,000 more people will join or return to the NHS as health and care workers on the frontline fighting COVID-19.

Our NHS is facing an unprecedented challenge and I pay tribute to each and every one of them helping battle this virus.

The entire country is grateful but we must help them too. That’s why we are telling everyone to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.

Published 26 March 2020