How dependent are parts of Barking and Dagenham’s hospital trust on EU staff?
PUBLISHED: 13:00 24 October 2018 | UPDATED: 10:34 25 October 2018
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More than one in 10 midwives working at Barking and Dagenham’s hospital trust are EU nationals, figures show.
Data compiled by The Bureau of Investigative Journalism (BIJ) from NHS Digital data revealed that out of the 6,393 members of staff working at Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospital Trust (BHRUT), 534 members of staff are from the EU, an equivalent of 8.4 per cent of the work force.
The BIJ also looked at a breakdown of the staff roles, for example 13.2pc of nurses and health visitors working at BHRUT are from the EU.
Queen’s Hospital in Rom Valley Way, has a large maternity ward with more than 8,000 babies delivered a year, and according to the data, 14.1pc of midwives at BHRUT are from the EU.
With Brexit on the horizon these figures might affect future recruitment from EU countries and staff retention.
Jason Seez, director of strategy and infrastructure at BHRUT said: “We are working on the understanding from government that our valued workforce of staff from across the European Union will have all their rights to live and work here maintained.
“The centre of our workforce strategy is to continue to ‘grow our own’ teams from our local community, and we have low numbers of EU staff compared with some other trusts, so we are confident the direct impacts will be minimal. However there might be broader issues across London which could impact us, if all the trusts are in competition for a smaller workforce.
“We continue to explore all the potential impacts from Brexit and to make plans accordingly.”
Following the Brexit referendum in 2016, out of 73,880 votes, 62.4pc voted to leave and just 37.6pc voted to remain in the EU.
Jon Cruddas, MP for Dagenham and Rainham said: “I think we can assume that Brexit will have an initial impact on staff across many industries and public services.
“However it would be inaccurate to suggest that the 534 members of staff from the EU currently working in our local NHS services are going to be struck off at 11.01pm on March 29, 2019.
“Whilst I have little faith in the government to deliver a plan that works, I have faith that the NHS can effectively manage its staff, and that the opposition will effectively lobby government to ensure that the final transition period has as little negative impact as possible.”
In response to the data collated by the BIJ, a department for health spokesman said the number of EU nationals working in the NHS had increased since the referendum.
He said the “NHS is preparing for all situations”, but stressed that EU staff in the NHS “will be among the first to be able to secure their settled status”.
BHRUT has been contacted for comment.
For more information, visit The Bureau of Investigative Journalism.