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Control of nurses’ pay handed to employers


NHS organisations will be handed control over nurses’ pay under ambitious plans to reform the NHS announced by health secretary Andrew Lansley yesterday.

The government white paper Equity and excellence: Liberating the NHS says that pay decisions should be “led by healthcare employers rather than imposed by the government”.

It says that in future all individual employers will have the right to determine pay for their own staff, as is the case for foundation trusts.

Under the new plans, employers will also be responsible for leading negotiations on new employment contracts and will take the lead in providing advice on staffing and cost pressures.

The white paper also outlines plans to give employers “greater autonomy and accountability” for planning and developing the workforce, and “greater professional ownership of the quality of education and training”.


Readers' comments (39)

  • Don't want to be a knee jerk carpist, but I see a) wages and benefits dropping b) educational investments and standards dropping. I hardly a great fan of the last government, but at least they invested in nurse education and made some headway in the appalling career development that existed before. Unless the RCN and Unison come out fighting we going to get screwed. Actually forget the last sentence, we've got to come out fighting. Are you going to be happy that your colleagues are on different - read poorer - contracted rates than you are? It will mean less movement in an already almost stagnant workforce where people are afraid of leaving a job, because the promotion will mean loosing benefits such as pensions.

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  • Hmm, I'm not sure about this. I do not see it totally in a bad light as Anonymous | 13-Jul-2010 11:15 am, as I believe this CAN have some positive effects if used correctly. However, the last poster is completely right that we will have to come out fighting and ensure that these positive measures get put into place, and they are fair to ALL Nurses.

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  • I think it is about time that the NHS realised that one reason nurses join agencies is because the pay is better. If the NHS payed bank staff a decent rate they would do less agency work and have a far greater incentive to stay with the NHS banks. This would then save money in the long run as the NHS would not have to pay so much in agency fees.

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  • About time we form nursing consortia so we too can be in the front line of negotiation and incontrol of our own destinies.

    Stuff sitting round waiting for things let's get involved NOW.

    Anyone interested?

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  • Perhaps a longer term idea is that all staff for the NHS worker is to register with and are employed via agencies and not direct as at present. Just thought!

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  • Martin Gray

    Count me in Sharon. Although I'm retiring it I am still in favour of nurses having their own union, not the current choices of Unison and the RCN. I will also have time to spare to get more involved than many others.

    Not sure what this will mean in terms of pay rates but can see a lot of discrepancies across the board.

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  • Hell yeah count me in! Viva la revolution!

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  • Paediatric Nurses
    £0 - 1 per hour London; City of London
    Was this advert for real ????

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  • Ummmm
    There is NO WAY I would want individual pay agreements from different trusts. Too many problems, and you already havent got back up as in a union.
    End of!
    Oh BTW Nice to see more positive input as to forming that much needed nurses union is maybe on its way....:)
    You go guys!!

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  • I agree absolutely with the first poster, and coming from a very isolated area with very poor pay locally and a captive audience (very low turnover rates) I can already see what will happen. the people (not necessarily those with the relevant qualifications) who know people will get the better pay: this has already happened so no change there

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