People Plan encouraging but significant funding is needed for real change

Commenting on the release today (Monday) of the Interim NHS People Plan, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said:

“Working for the NHS can be challenging so it’s good to see those at the top are finally focusing on the needs of their employees. A supportive workplace is vital to retain experienced, hardworking staff.

“However voices from across the health service must be listened to if this plan is to work. Ensuring staff know they’re valued and have the opportunity to advance their skills and careers is one of the key ways to motivate employees. It also encourages them to remain part of the NHS.

“But these urgently needed changes won’t happen overnight. Employers must work with unions to better understand the challenges staff face at work and how to resolve them. In particular, to deliver better-funded apprenticeships to help those who can’t afford university training.

“Flexible working would be a real boost to the lives of staff trying to balance home and work commitments. But delivering real change needs significant funding and a government committed to improving the NHS for all those that use it and work in it.”

Notes to editors:
– UNISON is the UK’s largest union, with more than 1.3 million members providing public services – in education, local government, the NHS, police service and energy. They are employed in both the public and private sectors.

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