Skip to main content

NHS: Manpower

Volume 463: debated on Wednesday 12 September 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) doctors, (b) nurses and (c) dentists were employed in the NHS in (i) full-time equivalent terms and (ii) headcount terms in (A) 1979, (B) 1997 and (C) the most recent period for which figures are available. (155240)

This information is shown in the table.

All doctors, dentists and qualified nursing staff—England

Number (headcount)9HC) and full-time equivalents

1979

1997

2006

2007

HC

FTE

HC

FTE

HC

FTE

HC

FTE

All NHS Doctors1, 2

65,442

5

89,619

84,758

125,612

119,096

5

5

HCHS medical and dental staff1

42,380

5

60,230

57,099

90,243

85,975

5

5

General Medical Practitioners (excluding retainers)2

23,062

5

29,389

27,660

35,369

33,121

5

5

Dentists3

12,425

5

16,470

5

6

5

21,041

5

Total Qualified Nursing staff4

192,052

161,359

318,856

256,093

398,335

322,062

5

5

Qualified Nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff1

190,243

160,367

300,467

246,011

374,538

307,447

5

5

GP Practice Nurses

1,809

992

18,389

10,082

23,797

14,616

5

5

1 Headcount figures exclude medical hospital practitioners and medical clinical assistants, most of whom are also GPs that work part-time in hospitals.

2 GP retainers were first collected in 1999 and are omitted for comparability purposes

3 Information as at 31 March 2007 is based on the new dental contractual arrangements, introduced on 1 April 2006, and is not comparable with earlier information.

Due to changes in coverage between the old and new contractual arrangements, there are some dentists working in trust-led dental services who were not previously included in the old figures. The national health service Business Services Authority Dental Services Division has estimated an upper bound of 578 dentists who fall in this category.

The figures take no account of the level of service, if any, that each dentist provided.

Numbers of dentists (headcount) have been provided as no whole-time equivalent information is available.

4 Figures for 1979 are hospital staff only and are therefore not directly comparable with later years

All data as at 30 September except 1979 and 1997 GP practice nurse data as at 1 October.

5 Denotes data not available.

6 N/A