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Workforce census

Workforce planning is about making sure we have the right number of public health consultants and specialists for the future. Robust data can inform the process and can help us plan and make the case for an appropriate number of public health trainees.

This data is important because:

  • It informs the allocation of training numbers and new specialty registrars to public health;
  • Public health consultants work in a multiplicity of different settings and are employed by a number of different bodies including local authorities, health boards, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID), other national public health agencies, the NHS, universities and the Department of Health and Social Care;
  • Evidence from advisory appointments committees shows that there are distinct regional variations in application rates for consultant posts across the country;
  • The age at which individuals choose to retire has a profound effect on workforce figures; and
  • Comparative data between regions can provide a powerful argument for increasing resources for public health.

The key workforce data collection in England is currently carried by Health Education England (HEE) and HEE have released a series of biennial reports relating to the public health workforce in England. Similar work is starting in the Devolved Nations and the outputs from that work will be highlighted here when available. 

Additional information about the public health workforce is highlighted in the Faculty's Functions and Standards document. 

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