District nursing in parts of London could be “decimated” if a community trust’s plans to save millions of pounds go ahead, it has been claimed.
Hounslow and Richmond Community Healthcare Trust has put 63 district nursing posts at risk of redundancy. The trust hopes only 12 nurses will be made redundant but admits others face moving to new jobs, many of which will be on a lower pay band.
The trust said the job cuts equated to 4% of its total workforce. It needs to save £2.7m this year, equivalent to 5% of its budget.
Michael Walker, regional officer for Unison, told Nursing Times the union was talking with staff and they had not ruled out the option of industrial action.
He said: “We are not blaming the trust. They have massive cuts to inflict as a result of a decision by central government.
“This is devastating to the morale of the staff and it will leave the area’s district nursing service decimated when it is already struggling.
“We are meant to be moving services out of hospital but this is going completely against that.”
The trust claims all efficiency saving have been reviewed for effects on quality.
A spokesman said: “We believe there is capacity within our services to work differently; it is crucial that we have the right staff, with the right skills in the right place that sits within the correct framework.
“We appreciate staff will be anxious about these proposed changes and we are doing what we can to support staff affected.”