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Home Industry News NHS spending on agency staff ‘rises by 60%’

NHS spending on agency staff ‘rises by 60%’

4th January 2010

New data has revealed that the NHS has increased its spending on employees from agencies by 60 per cent over the last two years.

Between 2008 and 2009, £1.3 billion was paid to staff covering hospital shifts, compared to the £786 million spent in 2006 and 2007, the figures show.

Meanwhile, £300 million of NHS money goes to the agencies themselves.

The Conservative Party, which revealed the statistics, said that the amount used to pay agency staff’s wages was double that spent on cancer treatment and equivalent to the amount allocated to maternity care.

Shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley declared the expenditure was “wasteful”, continuing: “Only under a Labour government could an efficiency drive actually result in rising spending on temporary and agency staff.

It also showed that a large number of agency staff earn more per hour than the NHS chief executive, while 34 per cent of the NHS budget is spent on administration and 22 per cent on nurses.

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