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Protests avert ‘blanket cuts’ to training places

Draft Department of Health proposals to cut AHP student training places by 14 per cent will be reviewed following concerns expressed by the CSP and other professional organisations.

The DH has written to the Social Partnership Forum – the liaison group for NHS Employers, trade unions and the DH – stating that it will ‘hold back’ the draft proposals to strategic health authorities on education commissioning.

The proposals, from a DH working group on non-medical workforce planning, had suggested the cut-back in training places to reflect a 14 per cent reduction in funding in order to meet the ‘quality and productivity challenges ahead’.

The CSP – through the SPF and the Allied Health Professions Federation – wrote to the DH and health secretary Andy Burnham, urging them not to implement the ‘alarming’ proposals.

Now the DH has said it will update its guidance to SHAs to ‘take on board comments’ it has received.

In the letter to the SPF, DH deputy director of workforce planning Debbie Mellor says the DH will look at how SPF members can contribute more effectively to workforce planning in the future.

Kate Moran, CSP head of employment research, said: ‘We welcome the fact that the Department of Health has listened to the arguments the CSP and others put forward against blanket cuts to AHP commissioned training places.

‘The CSP will continue to take every opportunity to influence the future of workforce planning in the NHS.’

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