The way staff view their working life at Kettering General Hospital is improving, with a new staff survey ranking it below average in fewer areas.
But chief executive Lorene Read has pledged an investigation after a fifth of staff still reported experiencing harassment, bullying or abuse from colleagues in the past 12 months.
Mrs Read said: “Overall the survey is an improvement on last year’s results and encouragingly our overall score for staff engagement has gone up and is now slightly higher than the national average for trusts.
“We also had significant improvements in staff recommending KGH as a place to work and staff motivation at work was also better than average with staff looking forward to going to work and being enthusiastic about and absorbed in their jobs.”
Results from the 2011 survey, released this week, ranked the hospital average in 12 areas and worse than average in 19 areas, compared to average in three areas and worse than average in 28 areas the year before.
It was ranked better than average in seven areas both years.
Mrs Read said she was ‘disappointed’ that bullying was an issue despite the hospital setting up a bullying helpline and open forums for staff to voice concerns.
She said the helpline has had fewer than five calls and nine formal complaints about bullying or harassment have been made.
Ian Kelly, staff-side secretary for Unison at the hospital, is to meet the director of human resources to discuss the survey results today.
He said: “This is now the second or third time bullying and harassment has raised its ugly head. It’s disappointing that from an organisational point of view they haven’t got a hold of it.”
He said the NHS was under financial pressure and staff – front-line and in management – felt undervalued.
A fifth of staff said they had suffered a work-related injury in the past year, compared to 16 per cent nationally, and almost a third said they had felt pressure to work when feeling unwell in the past three months, compared to a quarter nationally.
But eight out of 10 staff said handwashing materials are always there.
The Department of Health survey was carried out at the hospital in September and December and was based on 419 returned questionnaires from staff.