Pay freeze not the answer to NHS challenges

Published on Friday, 05 October 2012 15:09
Posted by Vicki Mitchem

Commenting on NHS Employers' submission to the review body on doctors' pay, Dr Mark Porter, Chair of Council at the BMA, said:

"The argument that continuing the freeze on doctors' pay will help NHS employers maintain quality of care simply does not stand up to scrutiny.

"There is already a major problem with morale, with doctors at the front line dealing with huge efficiency savings and wholesale NHS reorganisation. Maintaining and improving care in the face of probably the biggest ever financial challenge for the NHS requires a more strategic response than just continuing to cut the terms and conditions of its staff. The focus should be on employers working with doctors and other NHS staff to find more efficient ways of delivering care.

"Junior doctors' take-home pay is dropping, consultants' pay has been frozen since 2009, and the latest earnings figures for GPs show that their net income continues to fall. On top of this, all doctors have just seen more taken out of their pay to fund higher pension contributions – while the value of their pension benefits is being cut – with further contribution increases due to follow.

"We'll be publishing our own evidence to the review body early next week."

Source: ©BMA

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