NMC sees a 3% increase in the number of registered midwives

on 20 May 2021

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has published a report which shows there has been an increase in the number of midwives registered to practice.

The NMC’s annual report shows that there were 39,070 midwives on the register in March 2021, a 3% increase compared to 37,918 in March 2020.

In the same period, England saw an increase of 3% in the number of midwives registered (from 31,224 in 2020 to 32,183 in 2021), Wales saw an increase of 5% (1,663 to 1747), Scotland saw an increase of 2% (3,360 to 3,430) and Northern Ireland saw an increase of 3% (1,212 to 1,247).

Commenting on the increase of the number of registrants on the NMC register, Chief Executive and Registrar Andrea Sutcliffe CBE said: “There’s no doubt this has been a year unlike any other. It’s been difficult and, at times, traumatic for our incredible nursing and midwifery professionals, who’ve worked tirelessly to continue to care for people in the most challenging of circumstances.

“Given the impact of the pandemic, it’s great our register has continued to grow and overall, today’s report paints a picture of cautious optimism.

“However, while our register shows welcome and much needed positive UK growth overall, the pace of that growth has slowed. We’ve also seen the continued reliance on international recruitment, which makes us vulnerable to the impact of world events, as the early months of the pandemic showed.

“It’s also great to see fewer people have left our register, but we know from our leavers’ survey that workplace pressures and stress are among the key reasons for leaving. As we begin to address the longer term effects of Covid-19 on our health and care services, it’s clear we must do all we can to support the physical and mental wellbeing of our professionals so they feel able to stay.

“The pandemic has driven a surge of interest in our wonderful professions. It’s now the responsibility for all of us as leaders across the health and care system to heed the underlying pressures and work together to develop, support and sustain the nursing and midwifery workforce we need to cope with the future challenges ahead.”

‘The NMC Register’ latest annual report can be found here.