Talk Health and Care

retention, retention, retention...

The latest Skills for Care report shows around 30% turnover rate of staff in social care. Care workers that I have spoken to and data from some of our surveys and research shows that the greatest problem is retention. Care workers burn out, are paid peanuts for highly skilled and demanding work and looked down at by society.

We must ensure that people want to remain working in care. We must change the way care work is perceived (Like the Professional Care Workers' Day that NACAS run this year) and show people that it is an amazing job.

Care workers need to be paid and treated better and we will stay. We will stay because looking after people is not a job but a mission and because we love it. But we cannot continue doing it at the cost to our health, families and lives. 

There is no point in recruitment drives if people leave after 12 months. We need to show amazing people that already work in care that they are valued and treat them as professionals both in terms of payments and social perception.

Treat care workers better and that will help retain staff.


Caroline Dinenage 8 months ago

Dear Karolina,

Thank you very much for your insightful comment.
Ensuring that the demanding work of social care staff is recognised and valued is so important as it will help to address some of the significant issues you’ve mentioned, such as current perceptions of social care work and the challenge of retaining staff. Improving retention of social care staff is a priority for us in the Department of Health and Social Care and we are currently working closely with those in the sector to address the issue.
Supporting staff in their development and in balancing their work commitments with their health and well-being is also key. It is crucial that all employers empower their staff to do their very best work while always feeling acknowledged and appreciated.
This will help not only in retaining staff, but also in ensuring that the highest quality of care is provided.
Thank you again and please continue to contribute to these conversations on the #TalkHealthAndCare portal.


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Karolina Gerlich 8 months ago

Dear Caroline,

Thank you very much for your reply. I am glad to hear that you are working on improving the sector for care workers.
Regarding your comment that DHSC is working closely with the sector
I would like to ask that you revisit our invitation to meet with the National Association of Care & Support Workers. We are the only national body for care workers and as a care worker myself I would like to ensure that you get care workers' perspective when planning for our future. Speaking to providers is not the same as speaking to the workers themselves.
I would also like to discuss if you would like to support Professional Care Workers' Day next year as a day of appreciation and recognition of care work?
We have conducted research on the well-being of care workers earlier this year and I would be very keen to present you with the results and discuss how together we can make things better.
Thank you for thinking about care workers.

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