Commenting on the latest NHS England statistics regarding waiting lists and delays to be seen in A&E published today (Thursday), UNISON acting head of health Helga Pile said:
“There may have been a slight dip in the number of people awaiting treatment, but the backlog is still enormous.
“Having to wait months to be seen risks conditions worsening. Problems getting GP appointments mean many people have no option but to call 999 and go to A&E, putting even more pressure on services.
“Staff vacancies in the NHS are at critical levels. If the prime minister wants to meet his pledge, he must act over pay.
“A decent wage rise for health workers this year would help persuade experienced staff not to quit and encourage new recruits to join them.
“Convening pay talks now so nurses, paramedics, cleaners, healthcare assistants and other NHS staff get their April pay rise on time would start to fill the NHS vacancies hole and ensure patients get seen much sooner.”
Notes to editors:
– UNISON is the UK’s largest union with more than 1.3 million members providing public services in the NHS, education, local government, police service and energy. They are employed in the public, voluntary and private sectors.
The article Pay is key to fixing staffing crisis and getting NHS waiting lists down first appeared on the UNISON National site.