Written Answers from the Department of Health and Social Care – Reasons for leaving NHS


I asked this question to get NHS management to concentrate on high rates of turnover and loss rates from NHS employment. The easiest source of expanding the workforce must surely be to persuade more people to stay?

The Department of Health and Social Care has provided the following answer to your written parliamentary question (123841):

Question: To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the main reasons given by nurses and doctors are for leaving NHS employment. (123841)

Tabled on: 16 January 2023

Will Quince:

Data is collected from staff leaving service in National Health Service trusts and commissioning bodies through the Electronic Staff Record on reasons for leaving but has a high percentage of instances where reasons are unknown, 39% for doctors and 41% for nurses and health visitors. Where reasons are provided, the highest number of NHS trust and commissioning body doctors left those bodies due the end of fixed term contracts. This is high as it covers junior doctors moving out of those settings to others, such as general practice, on rotation. This was followed by voluntary resignation reasons and retirement. For nurses and health visitors, the highest proportion of staff recording a reason, left due to voluntary resignation and reaching retirement age. A table of the reason of leaving and the number of staff is attached.

The following documents were submitted as part of the answer and are appended to this email:

1. File name: FORMATTED PQ123841 Leavers by reason for leaving and specified staff group, Jun21 to Jun22 (1).xlsx
Description: Attachment

Reason for leaving Hospital and Community Health Service (HCHS) doctors Nurses and health visitors
Bank Staff not fulfilled minimum work requirement 16 14
Death in Service 35 209
Dismissal – Capability 17 202
Dismissal – Conduct 23 109
Dismissal – Some Other Substantial Reason 16 83
Dismissal – Statutory Reason 3 7
Employee Transfer 65 254
End of Fixed Term Contract 3995 340
End of Fixed Term Contract – Completion of Training Scheme 1299 32
End of Fixed Term Contract – End of Work Requirement 196 62
End of Fixed Term Contract – External Rotation 1433 2
End of Fixed Term Contract – Other 466 84
Flexi Retirement 57 304
Has Not Worked 9 10
Mutually Agreed Resignation – Local Scheme with Repayment 0 24
Mutually Agreed Resignation – National Scheme with Repayment 2 4
Pregnancy 0 5
Redundancy – Compulsory 8 8
Redundancy – Voluntary 5 30
Retirement – Ill Health 44 287
Retirement Age 1016 5490
Voluntary Early Retirement – no Actuarial Reduction 43 361
Voluntary Early Retirement – with Actuarial Reduction 50 191
Voluntary Resignation – Adult Dependants 30 197
Voluntary Resignation – Better Reward Package 61 574
Voluntary Resignation – Child Dependants 40 413
Voluntary Resignation – Health 61 879
Voluntary Resignation – Incompatible Working Relationships 17 204
Voluntary Resignation – Lack of Opportunities 35 233
Voluntary Resignation – Other/Not Known 1437 3495
Voluntary Resignation – Promotion 220 1496
Voluntary Resignation – Relocation 798 3536
Voluntary Resignation – To undertake further education or training 268 380
Voluntary Resignation – Work Life Balance 380 4231
Unknown 7743 16681
Total of leavers 19846 40365
Source: NHS Digital NHS Hospital and Community Health Service (HCHS) workforce statistics.
1. Leavers data are based on headcount and shows staff leaving active service, this would include those going on maternity leave or career break, for example.
2.Data are calculated on an annual basis in this analysis so leaver figures for 30 June 2021 to 30 June 2022 for example represent staff records that are present in June 2021 but are not present in June 2022.
3. Leavers records are linked to a separate ESR Reasons for Leaving dataset. In many instances the Reason for Leaving record has not been completed, which accounts for the Unknown records.
4. Totals for NHS leavers that are different to the sum of constituent parts indicate where staff have left the NHS in more than one post.
5. ”-‘ denotes zero

The answer was submitted on 24 Jan 2023 at 10:19.

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