New report on workforce burnout

June 8, 2021

Care England has welcomed the report from the Health and Social Care Select Committee on workforce burnout and resilience in the NHS and social care.

The inquiry examined workforce burnout across the NHS and social care in particular, the increased pressures brought about by COVID-19, and the resilience of services to cope with high levels of staff stress. The key recommendations are as follows:

  • Repeats call for Health Education England to publish objective, transparent and independently audited annual reports on workforce projections covering the next five, ten, and twenty years, including assessment of whether sufficient numbers are being trained.
  • Workforce projections should cover social care as well as the NHS.
  • DHSC should produce a People Plan for social care as a priority, aligned to the ambitions set out in the NHS People Plan.
  • The level of resources allocated to mental health support for health and care staff should be maintained as and when the NHS and social care return to ‘business as usual’ after the pandemic.
  • NHS England should review the role of targets across the NHS which seeks to balance the operational grip they undoubtedly deliver to senior managers against the risks of inadvertently creating a culture which deprioritises care of both staff and patients.

Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, said, ‘Whilst the workforce is resilient it is only as resilient as the funding and support behind it hence the need for adequate long-term support for the sector. We want to work with the Prime Minister to ensure that his promise to reform social care is delivered upon and carries the views and experiences of those at the front line.  Money alone is not the answer, we need to ensure that social care is established as a career with the kudos associated with due professionalisation and one way to deliver that would be a ten-year plan for the workforce akin to that of the NHS.’

Martin Green added, ‘As we made clear in our written submission and oral evidence, health and social care are two sides of the same coin. It is therefore essential that the adult social care workforce has the same access to resources as colleagues in the NHS.  Maintaining the financial sustainability of social care providers is of fundamental importance in maintaining the capacity of the integrated health and care system and the resilience of the adult social care workforce.’

Visit the UK Parliament website to read the report in full.

In recognition of Mental Health Awareness Week 2021 (10th to 16th May), CMM’s editor Olivia Hubbard spoke to two registered care home managers about how working in social care impacted their mental health during the pandemic. In the second post of the series, Mark Topps shares his story.

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