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Nurses ridicule idea of delaying retirement to plug gaps in care

‘Overworked, underpaid and undervalued’ – nurses take to Nursing Standard’s Facebook page in response to NHS letter to those who have recently retired

‘Overworked, underpaid and undervalued’ – nurses take to Nursing Standard’s Facebook page in response to NHS letter to those who have recently retired

Nurses have ridiculed suggestions they should delay retirement to help fight the backlog in patient care saying they should be paid fairly instead.

Taking to Nursing Standard’s Facebook page many nurses said they were ‘overworked, underpaid and undervalued’ in response to NHS England proposals they work more hours to plug gaps in care .

Profession deserves better after putting lives on line during pandemic, say nurses

‘Here's an idea pay the nurses you have a decent wage and maybe they won't leave in droves,’ one nurse wrote.

Another agreed,

‘Overworked, underpaid and undervalued’ – nurses take to Nursing Standard’s Facebook page in response to NHS letter to those who have recently retired

Nurses take to Nursing Standard’s Facebook page in response to NHS letter to those who have recently retired
Picture; iStock

Nurses have ridiculed suggestions they should delay retirement to help fight the backlog in patient care saying they should be paid fairly instead.

Taking to Nursing Standard’s Facebook page many nurses said they were ‘overworked, underpaid and undervalued’ in response to NHS England proposals they work more hours to plug gaps in care.

Profession deserves better after putting lives on line during pandemic, say nurses

‘Here's an idea pay the nurses you have a decent wage and maybe they won't leave in droves,’ one nurse wrote.

Another agreed, writing: ‘How about they “urge” the government to raise our wages decently so we don't feel so tempted to work in a supermarket instead?’

One nurse said the profession deserved better after putting their lives on the line during the pandemic.

‘Nurses are overworked underpaid undervalued. [They] put their lives on the line in the pandemic… nurses need to be respected by proper pay and proper staffing,’ they wrote.

NHS letter urges trust managers to consider creating contracted hours options for staff

It comes as NHS England last week appealed for retiring and recently retired nurses to continue working part time or from home in virtual wards.

In a letter to hospital trusts it also urged managers to consider creating ‘options for staff to increase their contracted hours, including through bank shifts’.

Latest NHS vacancy figures show the NHS has about 40,000 nursing vacancies and the government expects the numbers of nurses leaving the workforce to surge over the next two years.

Nurses’ workload is ‘ever-increasing’ in ‘an already difficult, stressful job’

One nurse questioned why those close to retirement should be asked to continue working when working conditions aren’t being addressed.

‘There’s a reason we want to retire. It’s called ever-increasing workloads in an already difficult, stressful job. Why should nurses considering retirement stay on? It isn’t going to get better so when can we retire?,’ they said.

‘Invest in staff, pay them properly and fund and invest in the NHS. Stop trying to guilt trip the staff who have had enough.’

The RCN is currently campaigning for a pay rise of 5% above inflation for the 2022-23 pay round.

In February, the government recommended a pay award of 2% to 3% for staff in England for 2022-23, which was branded tight-fisted by unions.

What is happening with the current pay offer?

An RCN England and Wales indicative ballot revealed half of the nurses who took part would be willing to take strike action over the 3% pay offer for 2021-22.

Nurses in Scotland have also said they are prepared to strike over their 4% pay offer for the same year.

In Northern Ireland, an RCN ballot showed that 92% of members did not want to accept an offer of 3% made by the Health Service Executive.



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