NHS consults on plans to expand practice nurse workforce

Health Education England (HEE) has established a working group to help develop its general practice nursing strategy due this autumn, which will set out its plan for expanding the nurse workforce.

HEE has issued a call for evidence for its upcoming strategy to expand and boost the nursing workforce in general practice, which was first floated in the GP Forward View.

The strategy will examine ways to improve training capacity for nurses in general practice and increase the number of pre-registration nurse placements, and will coincide with a £15m investment.

It will also introduce measures to improve retention of the existing nursing workforce and support for return to work schemes for practice nurses.

GPs have been warned they could soon face severe shortages of practice nurses, with one third of the current workforce looking to retire by 2020.

Nurse shortages

HEE said: ‘It will be a dual-purpose strategy to help meet the needs of the general practice nursing workforce of the future.

‘[It will do this] by: bringing together work currently underway within HEE, NHS England and other relevant organisations to form a national report and providing a practical "how to" guide for general practice based organisations including CCGs, federations, educators, general practitioners, practice managers and general practice nurses.

‘The working group will take into consideration a range of evidence, through written submissions, a stakeholder engagement event and literature review. We are inviting stakeholders to submit evidence to the working group by completing the template below.’

Responses to the consultation should be submitted by Monday 5 SeptemberA spokeswoman confirmed the final strategy will be released sometime in autumn.

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