Statistics from NASGP’s independent locum booking platform, LocumDeck, show bookings are at their highest in the platform’s six-year existence.
Dr Fieldhouse told Pulse that demand has skyrocketed to its highest point since LocumDeck’s launch in 2016.
He told a reporter: “We’re finding in our system that as soon as a locum makes themselves ready to be booked, the practice just clicks and confirms them as soon as they can. The locums are having their hands bitten off to do this work.”
Dr Fieldhouse explained the increase may be partly due to the release of the Winter Access funding from NHS England, which has meant more practices can book locums because “cost decision has been taken out of the equation”.
One clinical director confirmed to Pulse that they’d seen the same phenomenon from the other side.
Dr Faisal Bhutta, clinical director of Hyde PCN, said: “In a week we filled all rotas until 30 March.”
LocumDeck bookings rose month on month between August 2021 and November 2021. January 2022 figures are now on track to beat November’s.