Skip to main content

Community Nurses: Manpower

Volume 475: debated on Wednesday 14 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the Answer of 30 January 2008, Official Report, column 1003W, on community nurses: manpower, how many community matrons are employed in the NHS; and if he will place in the Library information on the local intelligence which suggests that the number of community matrons may be higher than the official figure. (202565)

Community matrons were identified separately for the first time in the 2006 national health service workforce census. The 2007 work force census shows that 619 community matrons are employed in the NHS, which is an increase of 253 (69 per cent.) since 2006.

Community matrons

Headcount

Full-time equivalent

2006

366

351

2007

619

571

Increase 2006-07

Number

253

220

Percentage

69.13

62.67

Source:

NHS workforce census

Based on recent discussions with a number of strategic health authorities (SHAs) we believe that the census is an undercount, with community matrons most likely being recorded in the census within other occupational groups. Community matrons are a relatively new category and there may be some problems with how they are recorded in the census. Although not as robustly validated as the census, local information from local development plans is shown in the following table:

SHA numbers for community matrons and case managers sourced from local development plans—2007

Number

Case managers

1,725

Community matrons

1,890

Total

3,615

Note:

Case managers are required to demonstrate the same competencies as community matrons. In some cases a case manager may be best placed to provide the service to the patient.