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Minister actions recommendations in Agenda For Change report

Health Minister Edwina Hart today unveiled new measures to ensure Agenda for Change is consistently applied across Wales.

The move follows an Assembly Government-commissioned report by David Jenkins, Chair of the National Leadership and Innovations Agency in Healthcare, into the implementation of Agenda for Change, the new pay system for the majority of NHS staff.

This was because a number of issues were raised directly with the Minister on visits to hospitals across Wales. Agenda for Change was introduced across the UK in October 2004.

The report, which has been accepted, takes forward the recommendations below:

  • "No loss" on assimilation. This recognises the time it has taken to assimilate existing staff to Agenda for Change pay scales which has meant that some staff received a reduction in their pay on assimilation because of increments or pay awards they received in the meantime on their old pay scales.
  • A Job Evaluation Unit to be established. This is to ensure a consistent approach across Wales.
  • Wales Agenda for Change final consistency checking. With assimilation of staff onto Agenda for Change pay scales substantially complete, this is to ensure there have been consistent banding outcomes across staff groups.

Work on implementing the recommendations will begin immediately. Mrs Hart said: “The staff are the most important asset the NHS has and it is therefore important that they are valued and supported in delivering care for patients.

“Implementing Agenda for Change has been a significant project for the NHS, which, in the most part, has gone smoothly and is now substantially complete. Staff should be congratulated for their hard work in achieving this.

“However, I was concerned that when I visited several hospitals after being appointed Health Minister that many staff were unhappy at how Agenda for Change had been implemented.

“I am pleased with the work undertaken by David Jenkins. This should re-assure staff and ensure consistency and fairness for all staff across Wales.

“I will be writing to trust chairs to highlight the report and its recommendations.”

Welsh Assembly Government