NHS Scotland workforce hits record 155,000

NHS Scotland’s workforce has reached a record high of 155,834 whole time equivalent (WTE) staff — or a total headcount of 180,653.

The number of doctors, dentists, nurses, midwives, allied health professionals, and support staff working across Scotland’s hospitals and in communities increased by over 7,000 in the past year alone.

NHS Scotland staffing levels have now increased for ten consecutive years — and have grown by over 28,500 (WTE) since 2006.

NHS Scotland has higher staffing per head than NHS England – 28.5 WTE staff per 1,000 people in Scotland compared to 21.4 in England WTE.

Health Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “Under this Government, staffing in Scotland’s NHS has risen to record highs and our long-term investment in this workforce has accelerated since the outset of the pandemic.

“I would like to pay tribute to the dedication and commitment of our frontline healthcare staff for the vital role they have played in keeping us all safe throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Work is ongoing to further enhance NHS workforce levels and support Health Boards to fill posts as our investment in NHS staffing continues to create significant numbers of new roles in the system.

“Our record £300 million of new investment helped services deal with system pressures over winter and the £1 billion NHS Recovery Plan introduced a range of direct workforce investments.  This has included new measures to support Boards’ capacity for both domestic and international recruitment.

“Scotland has the best paid NHS staff in the UK and we have made £12 million available in the last year to support the wellbeing of the workforce.”