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Great Ormond Street nurses to be compensated for 'pay error'

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Nurses are among more than 1,000 workers at England’s top children’s hospital who will be reimbursed after being underpaid over a period of four years, according to nurse union leaders.

Amounts reportedly owed to staff at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) in London range from £50 to £3,423.

“We are pleased that our members will finally receive compensation”

Alan Ridley

Under employment regulations, staff on Agenda for Change who receive an enhanced rate for working unsocial hours are still entitled to this extra cash during their annual leave.

The amount they receive for their holiday period is based on an average of their last three months of unsocial hours payments.

However, the Royal College of Nursing’s London branch claims the NHS trust had failed to properly adhere to these rules over four years, leaving a range of healthcare workers out of pocket.

RCN London said 1,115 staff members, including nurses, had been affected by the underpayment issue at GOSH.

Negotiations lasting for more than a year between the trust and staff-side unions have now concluded and will see rostered staff receive an average settlement of £620 in October’s pay packet.

Alan Ridley, RCN senior officer who represents affected members at the trust, said: “We are pleased that our members will finally receive compensation for significant underpayments that occurred up to four years ago.

“Without the handwork and determination of RCN London staff and local RCN representatives in the hospital, this issue may have remained a long way from being resolved,” he said.

“Additional unsocial hours payments during annual leave are fair compensation for nursing staff who consistently work through the night, at weekends, and at Christmas and bank holidays to provide care for Londoners around the clock,” said Mr Ridley.

He added: “It is essential going forwards that all trusts in London check the accuracy and suitability of their pay roll systems to ensure that nursing staff who work unsocial hours are not hit in the pocket.”

RCN London said the trust had made changes following the error to ensure staff who worked unsocial hours were correctly paid during annual leave.

GOSH had also issued an apology to staff affected, the college branch added.

Nursing Times approached the trust for a comment but it failed to respond. 

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