NHS need to understand Generation X in order to solve recruitment crisis

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By Local Democracy Reporter
Piers Meyler

THE work attitudes of Generation X need to be respected if NHS recruitment crisis to be solved, Essex County Council has been told.

Research shows that a complex combination of factors are leading to poor job satisfaction within general practice including workload, remuneration, perceived lack of recognition, increasing bureaucracy, indemnity costs and lack of peer support.

This is leading to an increase in the rate at which general practitioners are choosing to leave the workforce, or work on a more part-time basis.

Mid and South Essex in particular has workforce undersupply with high vacancies – there is a 11.9 per cent vacancy rate versus an 8.9 per cent.

Strikingly with 20 per cent of practices having all of their GPs aged over 54 years, as of September 2018, 33 per cent of GPs are forecast to retire in the next three years.

This is significantly higher than the national average of 21 per cent.

Lisa Llewelyn, from North East Essex and Suffolk STP, said her area is facing similar problems to mid Essex.

She said: “We need to recognise that people are seeking different methods of employment these days. No longer are we seeking people working to long hours.

“We have got – we sometimes refer to it as Generation X – people where they want to work 9 to 5. They want to be able to go home, they want a work life balance and we need to respect that.

“Because if we don’t offer that to them they are not going to work with us.”

She added: “The health and wellbeing of our workforce is quite important. I mentioned Generation X because the work life balance is quite an important factor.”

Mid and South Essex chief nurse Tricia D’Orsi said there has been difficulty in recruiting GPs but now there seem to be an increase in numbers.

“One big challenge in mid and south Essex is how we reinvigorate workforce, value workforce and work differently,” she said.

She added that gaps in the nursing workforce both in acute hospitals and community-based services are one of the most significant challenges for the mid and south Essex system.

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