A new report by the Care Inspectorate that reveals that more than a third of care providers- 36%-  in Dumfries and Galloway reported problems in recruiting suitable staff, “is a damning indictment of 10 years of SNP failure in health and social care workforce planning”, according to South Scotland MSP and Shadow Health Minister Colin Smyth.  

The report – the first overview of staffing shortages in social care across Scotland- also revealed that the number of social care providers reporting vacancies across the sector in Dumfries and Galloway is on the increase and reached 28% last year.

It also highlights that Brexit could make recruitment problems even worse, with many European workers currently in the sector.

Commenting on the findings, Colin Smyth said, “This report is a damning indictment of 10 years of SNP failure in health and social care workforce planning. Right across the NHS and social care sector we see shortages of staff as the Government have failed to make health and social care an attractive enough career to fill recruitment gaps or provide sufficient training places. Whether it is GPs, consultants or now it seems the social care sector, we simply don’t have enough staff. This is impacting on patient care and existing staff who are forced to do more to cover the shortages. It is only due to the dedication, professionalism and commitment of staff that despite the shortages, patients report that when they do get to access services, they find them to be good. But with demand for services set to increase as our population grows older and childcare is expanded, we know the problem of staff shortages is set to get worse”.

“As the report highlights, brexit has caused real uncertainty and applications from the EU for health and social care jobs in our region has all but dried up. That’s understandable because why would anyone from the EU apply for a job in our region whilst the UK Government continues to fail to guarantee they will be allowed to remain here when we leave the EU?”.

“Earlier this year, Scottish Labour launched our NHS and Social care workforce commission, which is made up of experts from across the health and care sector, to find solutions to tackle staffing shortages”. 

“It is clear from the care inspectorate report that we need action to address the workforce crisis in health and social care. The SNP must listen to the recommendations of our commission when it reaches its conclusions and get serious about properly funding health and social care by putting an end to the cuts.”


The full report can be viewed here:


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