NHS employees are expecting a pay raise in the coming days.
The NHS is under a lot of pressure and stress as a result of the high demand in the sector.
Will they, however, receive a pay raise, and if so, what will it be? Everything you need to know can be found right here.
What was the pay rise in 2021?
Workers in the NHS will receive a 3% pay increase in 2021.
This was only after the government reversed its position and promised a 1% increase, which industry leaders referred to as a “slap in the face.”
Nurses, paramedics, consultants, dentists, and salaried general practitioners all received pay raises.
This meant an extra £1,000 per year for the average nurse, and around £540 for porters and cleaners.
A newly qualified nurse currently earns around £25,000, with the average nurse earning £33,000 per year.
Will there be a pay rise in 2022?
The next round of NHS pay awards will be announced in the coming days by governments all over the United Kingdom.
It must be higher than inflation this time, according to industry leaders, to prevent NHS workers from leaving and seeking work elsewhere.
According to the BBC, prices are rising at their fastest rate in four decades in the United Kingdom right now.
“Say that in the midst of a cost-of-living crisis, nursing staff are concerned about how they will make ends meet,” said Pat Cullen, general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN).
“I know how frightened you are when the cost of living is soaring,” she’ll say, adding that a pay raise below the current rate of inflation this summer would be “another pay cut.” It’s not even winter yet, and people have to choose between heating and eating.
“People who can’t fill their car are taking the bus around the neighborhood.”
“Your employers have been forced to open internal food banks for their employees, which is a disgrace.” Politicians are to blame, and only they have the power to solve the problem.
“We should never feel ashamed to ask for a fair wage.”
“Anything below the current level of inflation will be a pay cut when ministers make their announcements this summer.”
“If they want to improve staffing levels and reward nursing skill, the award should go 5% higher than inflation.”
Is staff retention a problem in the NHS just now?
One of the most pressing issues facing the NHS at the moment is a lack of staff.
In 2021/22, more than 25,000 nurses left the profession.
106 chief executives and finance directors of trusts, including those that run hospitals, mental health services, and ambulance services, responded to a survey conducted by NHS Providers.
When asked what obstacles are currently preventing their systems from increasing activity in 2022/23, 92% cited workforce shortages, 87% cited staff exhaustion and burnout, and 86% cited an inability to discharge medically fit patients in a safe, timely manner.
Concerned about a lack of staff, 74% of leaders polled said they were not confident, or very concerned, that they would be able to recruit and retain enough people to meet their performance and recovery goals.
This was most noticeable in mental health and learning disability trusts, where 93% of respondents said they were not confident or very confident.
It stated that trust leaders “strongly support” an increase in employee pay, but that they need assurance that any increase will be fully funded by the government.
“No one should doubt trust leaders’ determination to increase activity and bear down on waiting lists,” said Saffron Cordery, interim chief executive of NHS Providers.
“They are acutely aware of the inconvenience and distress caused by treatment delays for patients and their caregivers…
“We entered the pandemic on the heels of the NHS’s longest financial squeeze in history, with capacity falling behind rising demand – a problem exacerbated by severe staff shortages and an underfunded social care system.”
“The pandemic exposed and widened those cracks, shining a harsh light on troubling health and racial disparities.
“We are seeing real progress in increasing activity and tackling some of the longest waits for treatment, which is a great credit to trusts, their partners across health and care, and, above all, frontline staff.”
“Trust leaders are determined to build on this, but given the challenges they face, some targets may take longer than they would like to achieve.”