Liberating the NHS

March 29, 2011

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LIBERATING THE NHS: DEVELOPING THE HEALTHCARE WORKFORCE

“More than 1.4 million people work for the NHS in England and they are supported by many more people working in community care, in social care, and in public health services. They are the heart of healthcare in this country. Their skills, commitment, professionalism and dedication are key to improving the health outcomes of the nation.

The government is committed to delivering high quality care to the patients and public who depend on the NHS during periods of their lives. To fulfil this commitment, it is vital that every member of the healthcare workforce is supported by the highest possible standard of education and training.

Our investment in education and training is an investment in patient safety and improving healthcare outcomes.

Education and training are integral in ensuring the values and calibre of staff. They are also central to achieving the continuing development of the workforce, which is required as technology advances and opportunities for further improvement of the nation’s health develop.

It is central to our vision that the healthcare professions provide leadership in ensuring the quality of education and training – so that locally and nationally we can all be confident about the standards being achieved.

We must also ensure that healthcare providers have the right number of staff with the right skills to provide excellent standards of care both now – and for the future.
Following the reforms outlined in the White Paper Equity and Excellence: Liberating the NHS, we want to empower healthcare providers, with clinical and professional leadership, to plan and develop their own workforce. They know what services their patients and local communities require – and they know what staff they need to deliver excellent, responsive healthcare. Therefore they are best placed to commission the education and training that will achieve the right workforce. To do this they will need to work closely with education providers.

This consultation seeks your views on the changes needed to support the development of the healthcare workforce to enable equity and excellence in healthcare. We look forward to your responses.

Andrew Lansley

Secretary of State for Health”

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