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School nurse numbers decrease

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The number of school nurses and health visitors in England has fallen in the past six months, figures from the NHS Information Centre show.

The 2.3% drop in school nurses and 1.8% fall in health visitors between September last year and April 2010 equate to about 200 full-time positions.

There was also a 0.4% drop in the number of NHS senior managers and managers, and the number of hospital doctors and radiographers also fell slightly during the same period.

However, the number of midwives rose 1.2% and there was also a marginal increase in qualified nurses.

The British Medical Association said: “It’s impossible to identify a long-term drop in numbers of doctors at this stage. However, a downward trend in future would be a cause for concern.

“Despite the pledge to protect the frontline services, many employers in the NHS are already freezing recruitment in response to financial pressures.”

Clare Chapman, NHS director general for workforce, said: “This data shows that the number of clinicians in the NHS have been broadly stable and also the beginning of a downward trend in the number of managers in the NHS.

“This reduction in management costs will allow us to reinvest in clinical care to meet rising demand and improving outcomes.”

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Readers' comments (1)

  • I expect this is the beginning of private sponsorship for healthcare training, the begining of the end of the nhs, and the acceleration of the widening gap in health inequalities... 21st century Britain, my a***!

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