The objective of this study was to describe the provision of consultant rheumatology services and the pattern of inequalities in UK rheumatology service provision, and to summarise the five-year impact of the new NHS consultant contract and the Musculoskeletal Services Framework in England and Wales. All consultants on the British Society for Rheumatology/Arthritis Research UK Consultant Workforce Register in January 2007 and January 2009 were sent questionnaires about timetable and working conditions and the personal and job-related details currently held about them on the register. Response rates were 87% in 2007 and 86% in 2009. The number of whole-time equivalent (WTE) rheumatologists in the UK increased from 470 to 531 (13%). Levels of provision in 2009 were lower in Scotland (1 WTE per 113,286 population) than the rest of the UK. There are now few regional variations in rheumatology consultant provision within the UK, and the number of WTE consultants is approaching recommended levels.
|Clinical medicine (London, England)
|Published - 5 Apr 2011