Friday, July 6, 2012
Threats to nursing jobs because of government funding cuts will not affect Lister Hospital, the trust that runs the site insists.
The Royal College of Nursing said this week that plans by trusts to make cuts totalling more than a quarter of a billion pounds over the next financial year - as part of the NHS’ Cost Improvement Plans to save at least £20b nationally by 2015 - will mean the loss of front-line employees.
But the East & North Herts NHS Trust said there will be no cuts to clinical staff at any of its four hospitals this year despite having to meet a savings target of 4.7 per cent of annual turnover, equal to £15m. The money will be found from increasing efficiencies it said.
Chief executive Nick Carver said: “The NHS is not immune to the economic pressures facing the country and it is absolutely right that people should expect that we look constantly for ways to spend taxpayers’ money wisely and effectively, reducing wastage whenever it is located.
“For us, the programmes are not about cuts as portrayed by some, but about spending our budgets as efficiently as possible whilst at the same time maintaining high quality services for our patients.”
Money-saving initiatives include using the centralised NHS Professionals to manage staff and locums rather than running its own bank of cover staff and using agency locums, as well as ongoing savings from the trust’s major reconfiguration plans to bring all inpatient and emergency services to Lister by 2014.
Mr Carver added: “In making these changes, we made a public commitment to seek to avoid clinical redundancies in delivering such new services. An example of what’s possible is the new Diamond Jubillee maternity Unit, which new mothers appear to rate very highly in terms of their experience and yet is £1 million cheaper to run every year than the two former services at the Lister and QEII.”