Health unions criticise ‘miserly’ 3% NHS staff pay rise

Health unions have criticised the government for offering NHS staff in England a “miserly” 3% pay rise from April, despite inflation having hit 5.5%.

Ministers have proposed the increase in their written evidence to the NHS pay review body, which advises what salary uplifts the service’s 1.3 million staff should get.

“With spiralling inflation and hikes to national insurance contributions, this derisory proposal means NHS workers are staring at yet another real terms loss,” said Rachel Harrison, a national officer with the GMB.

The union, along with Unison and the Royal College of Nursing, warned that offering only a 3% rise – the same as staff got in the current year – will prompt frontline workers to quit and thus exacerbate the NHS’s already widespread understaffing. Harrison said that the GMB had warned ministers and the pay review body that staff are already leaving. “This will be the final push that many others need”, she added.

Full story in The Guardian, 23 February 2022