BMA member briefing: Health Select Committee's workforce report

Our summary and analysis of the Health and Social Care Select Committee report 'Workforce: recruitment, training and retention in health and social care'. 

Location: England
Audience: All doctors
Updated: Friday 23 September 2022
NHS Structure Article Illustration

This briefing provides an overview of the House of Commons Health and Social Care Select Committee’s newly published workforce report, as well as the BMA’s analysis of the Committee’s recommendations to Government.

This report forms part of the Health and Social Care Select Committee’s wider inquiry into the health and social care workforce, to which the BMA submitted written evidence and supplementary written evidence in April 2022.


The report outlines ‘greatest workforce crisis in history’

Published in July 2022, the report examines the state of recruitment, training, and retention in the English NHS. In so doing, it describes ‘the greatest workforce crisis in history’ and emphasises the failure of the UK Government to take appropriate action.

On recruitment, the report concludes that almost every healthcare profession is facing shortages, with the situation regrettably worse in social care. On retention, the report highlights the need to revamp flexible working and emphasises the need for reform of the ‘national scandal’ of punitive pension taxation that forces senior doctors to cut their hours. In addition, it suggests the development of a national NHS ‘retire and return’ policy to replace ad hoc local schemes.

The report also notes the rising cases of racism, bullying, harassment, and abuse faced by NHS workers, which it acknowledges is affecting retention.