Government forces NHS England to cover part of 3% staff pay rise

Health service chiefs say that the government forcing NHS England to cover at least part of the 3% pay rise will lead to cuts in patients’ care.

Traditionally, the Treasury meets the full cost of annual pay rises for NHS personnel. However, Boris Johnson has decided that the service will have to help shoulder at least part of the bill for the 3% uplift, payable to more than a million staff for 2021-22 and backdated to April.

The NHS in England will have to find about £500m to help fund the 3% increase that the health secretary, Sajid Javid, announced on Wednesday, despite already struggling to meet the extra costs of the pandemic, including the care backlog, and treatment for the soaring numbers of people with “long Covid”.

Ministers are also facing mounting anger from the medical profession after it emerged that tens of thousands of doctors have been excluded from the 3% deal, despite the government’s advisers on NHS pay specifically recommending that they also be rewarded for helping to tackle Covid-19.

Full story in The Guardian, 22 July 2021