On the 6th February 2017, Baroness McIntosh of Pickering asked the Government “what estimate they have made of the number of residential care home beds that were available in (1) 2005, and (2) 2015.” The Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Revd Alan Smith, asked a follow-up question.
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: My Lords, with applications for nursing degrees having gone down by 10,000 and with planned immigration restrictions being imposed, what are Her Majesty’s Government doing to ensure that we have not only sufficient beds but the caring and nursing staff to look after those who are using the beds?
Lord O’Shaughnessy: The number of workers in the social care sector has increased by about 165,000 over the last five years: there is an increased demand because we have a growing population. I think that we are going to have another opportunity to talk about the impact on nursing degrees tomorrow, so I do not want to spoil the party. As for the impact of the European Union, of course, a significant section of the workforce comes from the European Union but we are increasing the number of nursing training places and there is also now a nursing apprenticeship scheme which is providing 1,000 places for people who want to enter the profession by that route.