Sinn Féin MLA Colm Gildernew said the Health Minister must bring forward a plan to address the shortage of frontline health workers.
Speaking after it was confirmed that 575 nurses have left their jobs, the chair of the Health Committee said:
“Between June and October this year, 575 nurses have left their jobs in the health service – that’s deeply concerning.
“Nurses have been under pressure for years now and that has only increased during the pandemic. They are overworked and underpaid and that needs to change.
“The 575 nurses that have left haven’t been redeployed into other areas of the health service, resulting in a huge loss of frontline workers.
“The Minister of Health must immediately bring forward a plan to address this very serious capacity shortage in the health and social care system.
“We know that in a recent appeal, over 30,000 people applied to work in health and social care and only 4,936 new appointments were made.
“Given this crisis, I am urging the Department of Health to revisit the large number of applications and to fill posts immediately so that we can begin taking the pressure off our frontline healthcare staff.”