NHS England turns to contractors to make staff feel valued – John Lister

NHS England has come up with a bonzer way to make up for the lack of pay and one million-plus staff feeling under-valued: dig up a long-forgotten “People Promise” – and bring in a private consultancy to try to make health workers feel “valued”.

Even better, dress up the whole exercise as “training” in which at least half the content  consists of staff sharing their own grim experiences of dealing with awkward and frustrated people on the front line.

Tell them they are getting a “trailblazing” on-line course – and prove it by quoting NHS staff saying it’s the first time anyone in the NHS has listened to them in 23 years!

NHSE obviously felt unable to develop its own serious initiative on Health and Wellbeing, not least because the tightening budget and the need to generate £12 billion-plus in “savings” by 2025 have meant the few welcome perks that were on offer to staff during the peak of the pandemic – free car parking, hot food for staff on night shifts, responsive support with mental health – have now been axed.

And while nurses, ambulance staff and others have taken to strikes and picket lines, NHSE knows they can’t solve the really big problem of the reduced and ever-shrinking real terms value of NHS pay without any move by government to cover the cost.

Full article in The Lowdown, 3 February 2023