Health Minister, Vaughan Gething, has announced an extra £16.4 million for a 14.5% increase in training places for nursing and midwifery and a 17.7% increase for other health professions.
Over the past 5 years training places for nurses and midwives have increased by 55.9% and it is the 6th consecutive year the Welsh Government has increased funding for health professional education and training. The overall NHS Wales workforce has grown by 10.4% over the last 5 years.
Mr Gething said:
The Welsh Government is committed to providing the NHS the workforce it needs to meet ever increasing demand. We are achieving this through increase training places, encouraging young people to take up health professions and recruiting outside Wales, supported by our successful Train, Work, Live campaign.
I am very pleased to increase training places once again for nurses, midwives and many other health professions that are the backbone of our health service. This record level of funding will support the highest ever number of training opportunities for health professionals in Wales.
This expansion will help us address shortages in priority areas and meet workforce needs of the future, as set out in 'A Healthier Wales'.
From April 2020, Wales will be training more nurses, midwives, radiographers, physiotherapists, speech and language therapists and dieticians than ever before.
The £16.4 million extra funding also includes £1.4 million for 47 additional Medical Postgraduate training places.
Earlier this month the Health Minister also announced that the target for GP training places in Wales had once again been exceeded. The quota for GP training places increased from 136 to 160 this year and 186 places have been filled.
Stephen Griffiths, Director of Nursing and Executive lead for Allied Health Professionals and Health Science at HEIW said:
We welcome the additional investment from the Welsh Government to support our proposals that will enable the growth of the workforce to meet service needs and support the development of the existing workforce.
We have worked together to demonstrate a truly integrated planning approach with the overarching priority being to improve population health.