Expert advice

Workforce: Will perma-flexi be the new bank and agency nursing?

Flexible employment contracts are on the rise elsewhere, but not much has changed in the NHS
Bank staff

Flexible employment contracts are on the rise elsewhere, but not much has changed in the NHS

Bank and agency nurses are propping up the NHS. Last year, NHS Improvement reported that four out of five nursing vacancies were filled by a combination of agency or bank staff.

Despite their growing significance, the roles of agency and bank nurses have not changed much in recent years.

New technology might be helping at the margins – making shift allocation more efficient, for example – but what they do and how they are contracted has not.

Staff in the grey zone

Given the controversial new types of employment contract in other service sectors – such as zero-hours contracts and the ‘gig economy’ in

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