Hospital must cut its £10million temps bill

Hospital must cut its £10million temps bill

Hospital must cut its £10million temps bill

First published in News

SOUTHEND Hospital must slash its anticipated £10million spend on agency workers which could pay for up to 400 new nurses, a union says.

Hospital bosses warned costs for locum doctors and agency nurses could reach £9.79million by the end of the financial year.

The news has been criticised by the health union Unison, a GP and patients, but the hospital insists it is doing all it can to recruit new staff.

Sam Older, regional representative for Unison, said: “Agency workers are there to fill the gap, but clearly this level of gap is too big.

“The hospital needs to work out where the gaps are, and we believe its mainly in doctor roles, as they command the biggest rates, and must recruit to fill them with permanent staff.

“The £10million figure would equate to 300 or 400 nurses. These are enormous sums of money being handed over for locum doctors.

The situation can’t continue.

“Cutbacks from Government to save money are actually costing more as hospitals are filling posts with expensive agency cover.

”The patients will see a difference. If someone is a regular at a hospital they want to see a familiar face.”

The hospital has set up a vacancy panel to recruit staff, created an overseas recruitment plan for nurses and started a European recruitment drive for doctors.

However, Dr Krishna Chaturvedi, a Westcliff GP, added: “Agency and locums are not only expensive, but clinical gaps and clinical efficency is greatly affected, which concerns our patients and us the most.”

Comments (4)

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4:13pm Wed 8 Jan 14

fletch12107 says...

There must be enough nurses/doctors in this country so why go abroad. If the ones that have been using the agencies are no longer going to get more money than permanent staff then they will soon sign up for a permanent role.
Getting foreign staff does not always equate to a better service.
There must be enough nurses/doctors in this country so why go abroad. If the ones that have been using the agencies are no longer going to get more money than permanent staff then they will soon sign up for a permanent role. Getting foreign staff does not always equate to a better service. fletch12107
  • Score: 4

4:19pm Wed 8 Jan 14

runwellian says...

What nurses they have don't care anyway, there are some that are fantastic, but others need replacing as they don't know the meaning of 'care'!
What nurses they have don't care anyway, there are some that are fantastic, but others need replacing as they don't know the meaning of 'care'! runwellian
  • Score: -3

5:18pm Wed 8 Jan 14

Daveydoo says...

The reason Southend Hospital fail to recruit staff and have to recruit agency workers is because they do not follow the flexible working policy which makes it very difficult for mums with young children to return to work.
The reason Southend Hospital fail to recruit staff and have to recruit agency workers is because they do not follow the flexible working policy which makes it very difficult for mums with young children to return to work. Daveydoo
  • Score: -2

7:17am Thu 9 Jan 14

Ian P says...

"Hospital must cut its £10million temps bill" makes a powerful Echo Headline, but none of their reports states whether the £10million is the gross cost of employing temps, or the nett cost. There is a big difference. If it is gross cost then the cost of employing the permanent heads the temps are covering for needs to be taken out of the total. If it is the nett, or incremental cost, due to employing temps then it is a disaster and clearly needs addressing quickly. Come on Echo, stop being economic with the truth.
"Hospital must cut its £10million temps bill" makes a powerful Echo Headline, but none of their reports states whether the £10million is the gross cost of employing temps, or the nett cost. There is a big difference. If it is gross cost then the cost of employing the permanent heads the temps are covering for needs to be taken out of the total. If it is the nett, or incremental cost, due to employing temps then it is a disaster and clearly needs addressing quickly. Come on Echo, stop being economic with the truth. Ian P
  • Score: 0

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