The National Health Service faces what’s described as the “greatest workforce crisis” in its history due to severe levels of understaffing.
A report by the cross-party Health and Social Care Committee warns poor staffing levels are creating a serious risk to patient safety.
Projections suggest an extra 475,000 jobs will be needed in the health sector and an extra 490,000 jobs in social care by the early part of the next decade.
So what’s causing the crisis? Pay concerns, Covid, Brexit, workplace sexism and bullying are all being mentioned as contributing factors.
And as patient waiting lists stretch over the horizon, what can be done to solve this workforce crisis - and what will happen if it’s not fixed?
We’re joined by Alan Lofthouse, a former paramedic and now a Unison union national officer, who reveals how emergency crews report ambulance waiting times outside hospitals of up to 20 hours.
The Leader also discusses the points made in the Health and Social Care Committee report, the impact of staff shortages on morale and whether the Conservative rivals battling for leadership have a good offer to improve the NHS.
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