The RCN has urged chancellor Alistair Darling to remember nurses and the wider NHS in his first budget.
RCN general secretary Peter Carter said: ‘Nurses put their patients first, that’s why we are calling on the chancellor to use tomorrow’s budget to cement the future of the NHS and quality of care.
‘We urge the chancellor to provide the support and resources required to deliver care closer to home and the development of fully-costed implementation and roll-out plans for all new health care policies so that recent reforms of the NHS are fully realised,’ he said today.
Mr Carter has also urged the chancellor to ease the financial pressures nurse’s face due to the rising cost of living. ‘A range of measures to improve tax allowances on clothing, footwear and laundry and would make a real difference to nurses who are balancing low pay against increasing costs on the high street,’ he added.
Mr Darling, however, has been widely tipped to impose a ‘green tax’ on business mileage allowance by lowering the amount employees can claim.
But Mr Carter called for an increase in the allowance. ‘A rise in the annual mileage allowance payments threshold would counter the cost of fuel rises faced by nurses who use their car to work with patients in the community,’ said Mr Carter.