BGS welcomes RCP call for action against ‘crisis in care’ for older people
The Royal College of Physicians (RCP) has warned that an ‘avoidable crisis of care’ is looming for older people owing to a combination of staffing shortages and an ageing population.
Professor Andrew Goddard, President of the Royal College of Physicians, said:
I have dedicated my career to working in the NHS – a service that I am fiercely proud of - and yet it scares me to wonder what might happen should I need care as I get older. There simply aren’t enough doctors to go round, not least within geriatrics.
“The workforce crisis we’re facing is largely down to an astonishing lack of planning. All successful organisations rely on long-term workforce planning to meet demand and it’s absurd that we don’t do this for the NHS and social care system. The government needs to accept the amendment put forward by Baroness Cumberlege and make workforce planning a priority.”
Dr Jennifer Burns, President of the British Geriatrics Society, said:
These figures show very clearly the current nationwide shortage of geriatricians - a situation that will only get worse with the predictable rise in the numbers of older people across the UK needing healthcare.
“It is absolutely vital that these fundamental issues around the recruitment, retention, development and support of the workforce are addressed, and that there is a properly-resourced strategy for future needs. The British Geriatrics Society stands with the RCP in strongly supporting the amendment to the Health and Care Bill.”
Dr Amit Arora, BGS Vice-President Workforce, said:
At the heart of good healthcare for older people is a skilled, committed, multidisciplinary workforce. Planning ahead for the long term in a realistic way is crucial to ensure that we have sufficient specialists in place across all parts of the UK, and that training, development and support sustain that workforce. Now is the time to prepare for the reality of a massive growth in the number of older people needing healthcare.’’