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Health unions reacted with fury last night to the Government’s offer of a maximum 3 per cent pay rise for NHS staff this year.

Organisations representing doctors and nurses have been pressing for a substantial pay rise following the efforts of staff during the pandemic. 

They have warned that without a significant improvement in pay, the exodus of healthcare workers will continue – damaging patient care.

Organisations representing doctors and nurses have been pressing for a substantial pay rise following the efforts of staff during the Covid-19 pandemic (file photo)

Organisations representing doctors and nurses have been pressing for a substantial pay rise following the efforts of staff during the Covid-19 pandemic (file photo)

Organisations representing doctors and nurses have been pressing for a substantial pay rise following the efforts of staff during the Covid-19 pandemic (file photo)

But the government offer, which comes amid a cost of living squeeze, threatens to once again put health unions at loggerheads with ministers over working hours and pay. 

Last year the British Medical Association and Royal College of Nursing both threatened industrial action.

Sara Gorton of Unison said: ‘This tight-fisted proposal is… barely half the rate of inflation, which is far from peaking.

‘The Chancellor and the Prime Minister must come up with enough cash for a proper wage rise that stems the staffing flight.’

Royal College of Nursing general secretary Pat Cullen said the offer showed that the ‘Government is not serious about tackling the nursing workforce crisis’.

The government's maximum offer of a 3 per cent pay rise threatens to once again put health unions at loggerheads with ministers over working hours and pay (file photo)

The government's maximum offer of a 3 per cent pay rise threatens to once again put health unions at loggerheads with ministers over working hours and pay (file photo)

The government’s maximum offer of a 3 per cent pay rise threatens to once again put health unions at loggerheads with ministers over working hours and pay (file photo)

‘We know that many are thinking of quitting the profession,’ she added. 

Rachel Harrison of the GMB union said: ‘A maximum 3 per cent for exhausted NHS workers would fall far short of what they deserve.’

A Government spokesman said: ‘NHS staff received a 3 per cent pay rise last year despite a public sector pay freeze.

‘We are rightly giving [them] another pay rise this year. 

‘This needs to be proportionate to pay rises in the wider economy, and take the economic context into account.’

Source: Daily Mail

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