Stress and Brexit cited as reasons for leaving nursing, but overall figures on the increase

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has published findings from its register, which shows that around 8,000 more nurses, midwives and nursing associates are now registered to work in the UK compared to 12 months ago.

This data report explores the numbers of nurses, midwives and nursing associates joining and leaving the register between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2019.

The data reveals a 126 percent leap in the number of nurses and midwives from outside of the EU registering to work in the UK for the first time – rising from 2,720 last year to 6,157 this year. This follows a number of changes we’ve made to streamline our systems and better support those applicants who meet the required high standards, through the registration process.

Figures also show an overall increase of more than 5,000 UK trained nurses, midwives and, in England only, nursing associates, driven by an increase of 1,567 joining the register for the first time and a decrease in those leaving.

The number of nursing and midwifery professionals from the EU continues to decline. Following a peak of 38,024 in March 2017, the number has reduced to 33,035 this year – a 13 percent drop (nearly 5,000) over two years.

Findings from that survey show that the top reason for leaving was retirement, however almost a third (1,050) of the 3,504 respondents cited too much pressure leading to stress and/or poor mental health as a top reason for leaving.

Elsewhere in the survey findings, 51 percent (92) of those nurses and midwives who trained within the EU, left the register and responded to the survey stated Brexit as a reason for encouraging them to consider working outside the UK.

While 20 percent (630) of the 3,210 nurses and midwives who trained in the UK and responded to the survey said they were disillusioned by the quality of the care provided to patients.

For more information about these findings, go to the NMC website

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