Health service pay increase pegged at 1 per cent but NHS employers say they can't even afford that

 

Whitehall Editor

NHS managers have hit out at plans to give health service staff a one per cent pay rise from next month suggesting the move could harm patient care.

In a provocative statement which will inflame tensions with staff who have seen their pay frozen for the past two years NHS employers’ warned that they could not afford the £500 million cost of the pay rise.

However unions said that one per cent was too little and would leave many nurses, healthcare assistants and lower paid staff “struggling to keep their heads above water”.

In a written statement the Government said it would accept recommendations from the independent pay review body that almost 1.4 million public sector employees, including nurses, doctors and members of the armed forces, would receive a one per cent pay rise from next month.

But NHS Employers, which represents managers across the Health Service, said the price tag of the pay increase would be enough to pay for an extra 15,000 nurses.

They added that it was wrong to say that most NHS staff had had their pay frozen for two years as most had received money through moving up pay bands.

“We gave compelling evidence to the pay review bodies arguing that a pay increase this year wasn't necessary and would add additional cost pressures to NHS trusts in what we know will be an extremely challenging year,” said Dean Royles, chief executive of the NHS Employers.

“This pay increase of one per cent for all NHS staff will add in the region of £500 million to NHS annual expenditure. This is the equivalent of around 15,000 new nurses.

“Employers' biggest priorities are maintaining and improving quality patient care and staff job security, both of which depend on sustainable pay bills.”

But Dr Peter Carter General Secretary of the Royal College of Nursing said the rise was not enough.

“urses and health care assistants are really struggling to keep their heads above water financially as their pay levels are failing to keep pace with inflation,” he said.

“The reality of increasing living costs mean we are seeing higher numbers of our members in debt and unable to meet mortgage payments.

“The announcement of a 1 per cent increase for 2013/14 does nothing to restore the 9 per cent gap caused by rising inflation that we have seen open up during the previous two years’ pay freeze.

Unison, which represents 450,000 NHS workers including paramedics, therapists and midwives, said staff will face another year of financial hardship.

The union condemned the second successive 1 per cent annual increase as a “squeeze” on pay, which officials warned would leave many health workers and their families struggling to make ends meet.

CPI inflation is running at 2.7 per cent.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
2015 General Election
May2015

Poll of Polls

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Installation and Service / Security Engineer

£22000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is part of a Group...

Recruitment Genius: Service Charge Accounts Assistant

£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you a a young, dynamic pers...

Cancer Research UK: Corporate Partnerships Volunteer Events Coordinator – London

Voluntary: Cancer Research UK: We’re looking for someone to support our award ...

Ashdown Group: Head of IT - Hertfordshire - £90,000

£70000 - £90000 per annum + bonus + car allowance + benefits: Ashdown Group: H...

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions