Solving NHS and care crisis must involve proper workforce plan, says UNISON

Pay and proper planning is key to fixing NHS and social care

Commenting on Therese Coffey’s new plan to improve access to health and social care over the coming winter months, UNISON general secretary Christina McAnea said today (Wednesday):

“NHS and social care both face the biggest workforce crisis in their combined history. Offloading to volunteers is not the solution.

“There’s not even a whiff here that the government might have a serious plan to respond to the dire problems in hospitals and care homes.

“That begins and ends with a proper workforce plan to stem the growing exodus of staff leaving for much less stressful, better paying jobs.

“Only with decent wages will both sectors be able to hang on to experienced employees and attract the new colleagues so crucial to get waits and delays down. In every part of the NHS and care, severe staff shortages mean people are going without treatment and support for too long.

“Rather than cut taxes and boost banker bonuses, the government must show it’s genuine about solving the cost-of-living crisis. Ministers should stop holding down the pay of care workers, paramedics, hospital porters, nurses and other key workers so crucial to improving the experiences of patients and those in need of care.”

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 the public, voluntary and private sectors.