A nationwide campaign has been launched to encourage staff to join the health service’s bank system for managing temporaryworkers, in a bid to help reduce trusts’ spending on external agencies.
Launched by NHS Professionals – the health service organisation that oversees the supply of bank workers – the campaign will run in the 62 trusts for which it currently manages temporary staff.
“Trusts’ in-house banks are a vital part of the NHS, and, used effectively, can help trusts reduce their reliance on expensive agencies”
The Love the NHS – Return to the Bank campaign will run until the middle of March and will target nurses mployed by trusts who are also looking for additional shifts.
Nurses who may have recently left their trust either due to retirement or to have children will also be encouraged to return to the organisation as a bank worker.
The campaign will remind nurses that working through the bank offers weekly pay and flexibility of shifts.
Statistics from NHS Professionals have shown a significant increase in demand for temporary nurse staff in the past few years.
The number of nursing hours trusts requested to fill with bank workers per month increased from around 650,000 in April 2012 to 1.3 million three years later.
NHS Professionals currently has a bank of over 60,000 workers, who help NHS trusts to fill over three million shifts every year.
Stephen Dangerfield, chief executive of NHS Professionals, said: “We are delighted that our client trusts are supporting the Love the NHS – Return to the Bank campaign.
“Trusts’ in-house banks are a vital part of the NHS, and, used effectively, can help trusts reduce their reliance on expensive agencies, maintaining safe staffing levels with a reliable and constant supply of staff,” he said.
Last year regulators introduced caps on the hourly rates of pay the NHS can provide for agency staff, as well as placing an overall limit on agency nurse spending for each trust.
The move was part of a clampdown on the use of agency workers, which has been a major contribution to the financial difficulties of trusts across the country.