Fewer nurses work in Wigan's hospitals

Wigan Infirmary
Wigan Infirmary

More doctors and managers are now working at Wigan’s hospitals, but there has been a drop in the number of nurses and health visitors, new figures reveal.


Data from NHS Digital show there were 4,311 full-time equivalent employees at Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust in May.

That was a small increase of 0.41 per cent from 4,293 staff in May last year.

The number of doctors rose by 9.61 per cent, from 468 to 513, including a 1.66 per cent increase in consultants, from 180 to 183 posts.

However, a trust spokesman said the total number of doctors now included people employed by the trust in a programme for those from overseas and they did not all work in the borough’s hospitals.

There was a large rise in the number of managers at the trust.

Senior management posts rose by 20 per cent, from 25 to 30, while other management roles increased by 14.5 per cent, from 62 to 71.

The largest drop was in the number of nurses and health visitors. There were 1,047 in May 2017, but this had dropped by 4.29 per cent to 1,002 in May this year.

A trust spokesman said: “The figures from the May 2018 NHS England workforce statistics incorporates MCH figures, which have been expanded to include doctors who are employed by Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust, but do not necessarily work in our hospitals.

“WWL has lower than normal references costs which acts as an indication of management overheads.

“We have an active programme of work reviewing corporate and management resource aligned to the Lord Carter work programme.”

Lord Carter carried out a review of efficiency in hospitals and recommended how large savings could be made.

The spokesman did not comment on the drop in the number of nurses and health visitors employed by the trust.

But last month it was reported the trust had 50 vacant posts and was working to tackle the issue.

This included a return to practice programme for recently retired nurses and apprenticeships for people hoping to become nurses.

The new figures show the total number of full-time equivalent NHS staff rose from 1,045,953 to 1,062,216 over the year - 1.55 per cent.

There was a 2.55 per cent increase in the number of doctors and nurses and health visitors grew by 0.15 per cent.

There were also more managers and senior managers across the country.