With the upcoming election, you might be wondering how the job market you are currently in, or heading towards, will take the pressure of this ever more Political Hot Potato: our NHS.  The Kings Fund have their eye on the ball – so here’s a round-up of what they’re thinking.

See: http://www.kingsfund.org.uk/

 NHS Staffing Levels

 Source: The King’s Fund Think Tank, 2015

 

Political Parties

With the lowering trend in management staff, alongside the increasing numbers of nurses, technical and senior staff we might expect this shift to continue over the next few years while the bureaucracy continues to fall and the reputation of the NHS following recent scandals is gradually repaired. These statistics show a leaning towards ‘boots on the ground’ as opposed to ‘suits in ivory towers’.  This trend is good for the sector – it allows for medical decision-making to challenge economic management – which can’t be a bad thing. 

In the latest £80 billion reorganisation of funding towards GPs and commissioning groups, we may have some cause for concern regardless of the Party that takes the reins.  Chris Ham, Chairman of the King’s Fund has said that changes have been “complex, confusing and bureaucratic” adding that “historians will not be kind” which doesn’t bode well for Jeremy Hunt, and since the Tories want to raise the budgets in real time – doesn’t look like the funding is entirely forthcoming.

Labour’s focus is on “20,000 new nurses, 8,000 extra GPs and 5,000 homecare workers” (The Telegraph, 2015) spending up to £2.5 Billion per year, for how long, it isn’t clear. So here again – huge focus on Primary Care and GP services.  Labour are ‘the spending party’, which of course rankles with the corporate world, but in the last they have delivered – will they deliver again?

The Lib Dems are pushing for much more prevention work and mental health – the latter being in dire need, with services lying empty and a lot of unwell people. 

UKIP are classically controversial and contradictory in their approach “the NHS almost killed me – you should go private” is something Farage denies. However, a policy is to add £3 Billion to frontline services, and tackle dementia with a cash injection of £650 Million.

Lastly, the Greens – super left wing when it comes to the NHS – keep it, publically run it – free at the point of use. Old fashioned values for an increasingly popular political option.  I hear Bristol are all over the greens.

Wrapping Up

What the NHS needs is continual funding, clever decision makers and an open and honest outlook. Perhaps we’ll soon see medical training offered in universities with an added post graduate training in economics and business administration thrown in for willing parties – what sort of training would suit you and your career plans?  Do you think it is necessary to be uber-trained for the NHS to have a positive future? Would you consider a secondment away from the medical and into the business environment?  These questions will keep us all in work for lifetimes to come!