CPD funding for the NHS workforce will be nearly halved in some areas in 2017, a report by the Council of Deans for Health.
All but one of the 13 local education and training boards in England have cut funding for continuing professional development in 2016/17. In some areas, cuts are 40% to 45%, according to the report. It states that these cuts will have a material impact both on universities and on the NHS and its workforce.
‘Major reports on services, including the Francis and Kirkup reports, have focused on the importance of staff training, yet midwives and other staff are facing potentially less funding,’ said Louise Silverton, RCM director for midwifery. ‘This is particularly disturbing because we know that the key to improving productivity in the NHS is through valuing and engaging the existing workforce, and equipping them with the skills and resources they need to provide safe and high quality services.’
According to the report, the cuts will damage the provision of mentorship preparation for NHS staff in some areas. The report states that these are ‘courses which are crucial to delivering the pre-registration programmes for nursing, midwifery and AHPs.’
‘Patient care is transforming at a rapid pace, and without continuing training and education, it’s hard to see how nursing staff can be expected to keep up with these changes,’ said Stephanie Aiken, RCN Deputy Director of Nursing. ‘Funding for training and development has been cut almost by half, yet the strategy for the health service and the care it delivers has not adapted to reflect this loss.’