Senior nurse discusses problems with nurse

Could NHS avoid public sector pay freeze?

The Government is expected to announce that Public Sector workers will face a freeze in their pay when the Chancellor announces his spending review next week.

However, it is expected that those who work within the NHS will be exempt in order to reflect the efforts that have been made throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

According to think tank, Centre for Policy Studies, £23bn could be saved over 3 years if the public sector pay freeze is in place, with £15bn being saved if NHS workers are made exempt.

This morning, the Health Secretary, Matt Hancock, side-stepped when asked whether NHS workers would receive the same pay freeze as others in the public sector saying he would leave any announcements to his colleague, Rishi Sunak.

The report from CPS and speculation surrounded has been met with criticism from unions claiming that the public sector are again expected to bear the brunt of poor Government spending.

Responding to the report by CPS, BMA council chair, Dr Chaand Nagpaul, said:

“NHS staff have gone above and beyond during this pandemic, often working long hours in unfamiliar settings and risking their lives to help keep others safe, so it’s only right that they are properly remunerated for their efforts. 

“The notion of implementing a pay freeze on doctors would be deeply demoralising at a time when their efforts deserve to be explicitly recognised in a health service facing unprecedented pressure from the unabated impact of the pandemic. 

“Indeed, since 2008 doctors have experienced the biggest drop in pay compared to all other pay review body occupations, and not only have these cuts have had a damaging effect on many doctors’ living standards, they have reduced the ability for the NHS to recruit and retain precious staff. 

“At a time when the Government has developed significant financial support packages for businesses, it can only be morally right to fairly reward doctors for their tireless efforts, especially when we consider the immense backlog in the NHS and the continuing demands of Covid-19.  

“The NHS is likely to be overwhelmed for the foreseeable future, coupled with existing doctor shortages with around 8,000 unfilled medical vacancies in hospitals in England alone. A failure to remunerate and value doctors fairly threatens to exacerbate the workforce crisis facing our health service and our capacity to deliver much needed care for patients.”

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