Hunt putting finance before patients, says UNISON

Commenting on Department of Health proposals to halt an increase in NHS pay in England, Christina McAnea, UNISON head of health, said:

“Report after report has demonstrated the risk to quality arising from what Robert Francis described as ‘putting finance before patients’.

“We all know that productivity comes from having well motivated staff who understand their jobs, have adequate resources, and feel valued by their employer. Being told they are not worth a measly 1% is likely to have the opposite effect.

“With 60% of staff last year citing concern about the quality of service they are currently able to provide, this move from Hunt could signal that the situation will become critical next year.

“NHS trusts in England (those without the freedom to bank their surplus) gave over a billion pounds back to the Treasury last year.

“Further cuts to pay next year would mean that nurses, paramedics, therapy staff, porters, housekeepers and receptionists are going to have to take a hit so there will be more in Osborne’s pot to pay for Tory tax bribes.

“What we are seeing is another step in the deliberate undermining of the NHS in an attempt to run down services and create chaos.

“This is all a question of priorities; this government actively chose to award millionaires with a tax cut and now it seems that nurses and other health workers are the ones who will be paying for this luxury with a further cut to their living standards.”

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