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Currently almost 10% of the UK total NHS expenditure on nursing and midwifery is on agency staff (MAC, 2016).
Since Brexit, nursing applications have decreased by over 90% (Telegraph, 2017).
Nurses are the single biggest group of staff in the NHS.
"Nurses now account for 31% of total spending on clinical agency staff by all NHS foundation trusts (NHS Improvement, 2016).
The number of nurses coming from the EU dropped by a third last year (BBC, 2017).
There should be 340,000 nurses in England, but 1 in 9 posts are vacant. In some hospitals this goes up to 1 in 3 (BBC, 2017).
"International recruitment has historically helped fill gaps between predicted and actual demand for nurses" (NHS Improvement, 2016).
Agency charges for nurses increased by around 30% from 2012 to 2015 (NHS Improvement, 2016).
Trusts’ current forecasts anticipate further growth in the nursing workforce (NHS Improvement, 2016).
The NAO (NAO 2015) has estimated that spending on agency staff overall (i.e. not just nurses) in the NHS in England increased from £2.2bn in 2009-10 to £3.3bn in 2014-15.
NICE recommend clinical vacancy rates should be at most 5 per cent. It is estimated the national vacancy rate is at least 9.4% (MAC, 2016).