Health union puts pressure on PM to speed up pay rise for Northamptonshire's NHS heroes

“Many of the staff that look after us all are beyond exhausted and feel let down by politicians," says UNISON boss

Monday, 18th January 2021, 12:16 pm
Updated Monday, 18th January 2021, 2:44 pm

Many NHS staff in Northamptonshire believe the Government is not doing enough to acknowledge their efforts ​during the pandemic, according to a health union survey​ published today.

UNISON is calling on the government to stop dithering and give all health service workers a pay rise of at least £2,000 NOW in an effort to boost morale.

Many staff are at breaking point, says the union, often working long back-to-back shifts to deal with worsening staff shortages and packed hospitals as Covid-19 cases soar.

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Latest figures revealed 418 covid-19 positive patients being treated in Northamptonshire's two acute hospitals and Kettering General Hospital last week declared a "critical incident" as it battled to cope with up to 18 new admissions a day.

More than 10,000 health workers from across the UK took part in a survey which has been used as part of evidence submitted by UNISON to the NHS pay review body.

All 14 of the UK’s health unions have also written to Prime Minister Boris Johnson urging him to speed up the pay process so NHS staff get a promised wage rise as soon as possible rather than have to wait months.

The UNISON survey reveals only one in ten health workers says the Government values NHS staff and 85 per cent say they are angry at how NHS staff are being treated by ministers.

NHs staff have battled through the pandemic but may have to wait months for a promised pay rise. Photo: Getty Images

UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “Many of the staff that look after us all are beyond exhausted and feel let down by politicians who expect health workers to give everything but show them little in return.

“A rise of £2,000 as soon as possible would persuade many NHS staff to stay and encourage others to consider a career in health.

“Time and again ministers remind the public about protecting the NHS. The Government can show how to do just that by investing properly in the staff looking after us all.

“The Prime Minister should speed up the pay process to give vital NHS staff what they deserve quickly.”

Almost two thirds of staff surveyed said the Government’s approach to NHS pay — ignoring calls for an early and significant pay rise in recognition of the difficulties staff have faced in the past year — makes them question their future in the health service.

Health workers have been promised a pay-rise in April but the NHS pay review body is not due to report until May. UNISON says this means that NHS staff are not likely to get a pay rise until June at the earliest, says UNISON.