Friday, August 7, 2009

Good news!

Here is the first bit of good news on the employment prospect front that I've seen for a long time.

"The number of empty jobs was measured on March 31 this year. Among hospital doctors and dentists, excluding trainees, the vacancy rate was 5.2 per cent, compared with 3.6 per cent in the same month last year. The long-term vacancy rates for this group jumped two thirds from 0.9 per cent to 1.5 per cent. Vacancy rates for GPs increased only slightly from 1.6 per cent to 1.9 per cent. "

Seems that there is a doctor shortage (again) in the UK. Workforce planning has always been a nightmare, particularly with changes to people's preferred working patterns (flexible, part time), the legal landscape (European Working Time Directive, other stuff here in Australia), the sex balance of the workforce (more women, more demand for part time work), etc.

Your big chance to work in a hopsital like the one above.

Despite training a lot more doctors, it looks like the effects of these reductions in productive hours per MBBS plus the attractiveness of the NHS pensions plus the generally admitted "it's not like it used to be" horribleness of the NHS working experience has accelerated the departure of older medics from the profession. Sounds like restriction on non-EU staff are also having an effect.

Given that Australia has a similar set of demographic and work practice changes imminent, it will be interesting to see whether we experience a similar effect here. IMO, given that many medics here retire self-funded, and given the hammering that asset values has taken in the last 12-18 months (esp. sthare and property), I envisage a hiatus in the rush for retirement of senior staff until the economy has picked up a bit.

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