THE number of workers at Oxford University Hospitals (OUH) who took part in the national NHS staff survey increased by 10 per cent compared to the previous year.

In total, 5,767 staff took part in the 2018 survey – 48.1 per cent of staff who were eligible to participate.

Only 38.8 per cent of staff took part in the 2017 survey and less than 40 per cent of OUH staff have completed the survey in each of the last five years.

In a report to the OUH board, chief executive Bruno Holthof said it represented a 'step change in staff engagement'.

This year's figure is a significantly better response rate than in previous years and also above the national average response rate for acute hospital trusts, according to Dr Holthof.

The results of the NHS Staff Survey are expected to be published nationally in March.

Last year the survey revealed how hundreds of workers at OUH, which runs the county's the county's major hospitals including the John Radcliffe Hospital and the Churchill Hospital in Oxford and the Horton General in Banbury, were so stressed at work it had made them physically ill.

In the 2017 survey published in March last year, a total of 4,538 OUH staff responded with 41 per cent of those admitting work-related stress had made them unwell in the previous 12 months.

Responding to the news in April 2018, union representatives said the figures revealed a damning insight into the pressure faced by an ‘inadequate’ front-line work force in the face of a staffing and recruitment crisis.