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Saturday 24th August 2019

Pay deal causes anger for nurses

16th June 2014

The general secretary of Royal College of Nursing (RCN), Peter Carter, said a government decision to block a 1% performance-related increase in salary for nurses could lead to action.

NHS logoHe will be attending the union's four-day annual conference this week, based in Liverpool and said he cannot rule out calls for industrial action.

The decision

There was an independent pay review body who recommended that the NHS offer the 1% rise in payment for staff across-the board. These automatic increases are designed to reward professional development.

In March, the Department of Health (DH) said staff entitled to increases would not get the rise.


Health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, said the recommendations would be "unaffordable and would risk the quality of patient care", as there would need to be cuts if everyone got the 1% rise.

RCN spokesperson, Mr Carter, highlighted the "growing pay bill" for senior NHS managers, that could include termination payments and the removal of NHS senior staff.

Data obtained by the RCN shows that the amount spent on the executive directors has grown by an average of 6.1% in the past two years - compared to 1.6% for nurses, midwives and health visitors.

Mr Carter, said: "Failing to pay nursing staff a decent wage will continue to affect nurses' living standards and morale and cause many more to consider leaving the NHS.

"The government should do the decent and honourable thing and give nurses a decent wage."

A spokesperson for the DH said the difference in figures between nurses and executives should be "treated with caution" as other data suggested there had been no increase.

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