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Friday 19th July 2019

PCT redundancy rules tightened up

31st August 2012

Changes have been made to the approval process for NHS redundancy payments.


The moved by the Department of Health comes amid likely job losses when primary care trusts and strategic health authorities are abolished at the end of March.

With redundancies being the main tangible cost of the commissioning reform process, there are concerns that some payments may be made unnecessarily.

In a letter, NHS chief executive Sir David Nicholson has said that DH approval will now be required for all severance proposals for very senior managers at PCTs. Previously only SHA redundancies had to be approved in that way.

Sir David said the old process was developed at a time when such occurrences were rare, but points out that with the current reforms and movement of staff, there may be an increase in the number of cases over the coming months.

He said: “I am sure you can appreciate that it is vital for me to have an overview of VSM capacity and any proposed changes to this during this critically important period for the NHS.

“I have therefore decided that DH approval is required for all PCT VSM severance proposals in addition to the SHA VSM proposals. No termination or termination payment should be agreed with an individual until DH sign off has been received.”

The letter also reiterates the necessary requirements before severance is offered and that SHA cluster remuneration committees should have gone through that process.

The DH’s most recent estimate puts the cost of the “modernisation transition programme” at £1.5bn.


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