See | Understand | Learn

Guide to the NHS General Practice Workforce Dashboard
October 10th, 2016

We've just released a new interactive dashboard that enables easy and useful visualisation of the NHS general practice workforce in England. This section of the NHS workforce includes those who work in primary care: basically everyone who works in a GP surgery. This includes GPs, receptionists and practice nurses, as well as healthcare assistants, managers and a wide number of other job roles.

The dashboard is interactive in that you can click on the charts to 'drill-down' to view results for your selection. This enables you to view the workforce in very many different ways, for example GPs only, by a particular CCG, those aged under 50, or a combination of these selections.

This blog is intended as a guide for how to use this dashboard, with some examples of the intelligence that can be gleaned from it. The videos and guidance below are intended to be used with the dashboard itself in order to help you familiarise yourself with using it. If you have any questions or comments please do contact us. Likewise, get in touch if you have any requests for enhancements, or if you would like us to build you a similar dashboard.

1. Getting Started

You can navigate to the dashboard by following a link like this one or by clicking on 'Products' in the top navigation bar and clicking on 'General Practice Workforce Dashboard'. Once you get there it takes a few seconds to load and then you are ready to go.

Have a click around on the charts to see how you can interact with them and filter the data. Whenever you want to reset the charts, just refresh the page or click on 'Reset All'.

The following examples will show you some of the ways you can interrogate the data. These are just a few ideas - try some for yourself!

2. How many male GPs are there in England and how much Whole Time Equivalent (WTE) do they work for?

The General Practice workforce data reports the numbers doctors, nurses, managers etc. in the number of people working (headcount) and - reflecting the fact that some work part-time - the Whole Time Equivalent (WTE) of the workforce.

WTE is reported as a number between 0 and 1. Someone who works full-time counts as 1 WTE, reflecting that they work five days a week. Someone who works for 2 days a week counts as 0.4 WTE, another person who works 3.5 days a week counts as 0.7 WTE and so on. So, while headcount reflects the total number of people in the workforce, the total WTE of the given workforce reflects the total amount of their time worked.

3. Which parts of the country employ the most Practice Nurses?

The choropleth chart (map) reports at Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) level. Each region of the map is shaded according to the amount of WTE per 10,000 population of the current dashboard filter - the darker the region the higher the relative WTE per 10,000 population compared to all the other CCGs in England. This makes it possible to see where the most numbers of GPs, Nurses, Healthcare Assistants work per head of the population.

Clicking on the 'Practice Nurses' row in the Job Role Row Chart will show on the map where the highest WTE of these nurse are employed per 10,000 population.

4. What is the age breakdown of female GPs?

The 'Age in Years' bar chart displays the age breakdown (in total WTE) of the workforce in the current filter. This means that you can get an understanding of the age demography of the workforce for any selection of the workforce you make from the other charts.

Selecting 'GP' from the Area of Work Pie Chart and 'Female' from the Gender Pie Chart will display the age breakdown of female GPs in England.

5. Which parts of the country employ the most nurses over 60?

This kind of question is useful for workforce planning to ensure continuity as people retire or change their working patterns. To get a picture of where a particular age group of the workforce is most prevalent around the country you can select it from the Age in Years bar chart.

Selecting 'Nurses' from the Area of Work Pie Chart and then an over 60 age range from the Age in Years Bar Chart will lead the map to show the regions with the highest WTE of nurses over 60 in England.

Hopefully this quick guide has whet your appetite regarding what you can learn about the General Practice workforce in England by using our interactive dashboard. We built this dashboard as we thought it would be useful for people who work in primary care, NHS commissioners, workforce planners and others to help them gain a greater understanding of the demography and geography of this part of the NHS. If you think it's useful please point others towards it. We can build an interactive dashboard on data pertaining to your workforce or another business area for you, and be happy to discuss this further with you.