Nurses 'will quit NHS in droves' over pay

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The Independent Online
NURSES will leave the health service in droves if the Government persists with a public sector pay freeze, it was claimed yesterday, writes Liz Hunt.

Organisations representing more than 600,000 staff warned that dropping a national pay award in favour of local deals was a 'patchwork' solution which would result in turmoil. Nurses are seeking an 8.3 per cent rise which they claim is necessary to bring their pay up to the level of other workers.

A document leaked this week revealed that ministers had agreed to an acceleration of plans to end national pay awards. The NHS Pay Review body was told not to recommend an across-the-board pay increase. The Government wants nurses, midwives, and health visitors to receive pay awards agreed by individual trusts, linked to efficiency deals and cost-savings.

The Nursing and Midwifery Staff Negotiating Council said at the launch of its evidence to its independent Pay Review Body yesterday, that such a move would 'set nurse against nurse, specialist against specialist, hospital against hospital, and the losers will be the patients'.

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