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RCN demands government rethink nurse pay

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) is today calling on MPs across the political spectrum to support its efforts to contest the government's recent decision on NHS pay.

Last month, the independent NHS Pay Review Body recommended a 1% cost of living increase for all staff on Agenda for Change contracts.

Despite previously saying that the increase was affordable, the Government is now refusing to implement it for all staff in the way that the Pay Review Body intended. 

In a letter to MPs, Dr Peter Carter, Chief Executive & General Secretary of the RCN, points out that contrary to what the Government is claiming, 60% of nurses will receive no cost of living pay rise whatsoever.

Dr Carter warns MPs that he morale of the nursing workforce is at an all-time low and that nurses feel “personally attacked or punished”. 

He said:  “Many are viewing this refusal by the government as the final straw and may leave the profession. We can ill afford a further exodus given the widely accepted workforce issues already facing the NHS and the difficulties Trusts all across the UK are having in recruiting nurses to vacant posts.

“Failing to award a modest 1 per cent cost of living increase to the workforce that has carried the NHS throughout huge reorganisation and large scale workforce cuts will prove to be short-sighted and damaging to the NHS in the long run.”

The letter urges MPs to press the Secretary of State on the issue.