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23 November, London 

This year's conference took place at TUC Congress House on Wednesday 23 November.  Please click through for highlights from the day.

Share responsibility for change with staff and the public, urges NHS managers’ union

Fri 19 Feb 2016

MiP responds to the Shared Delivery Plan: 2015 - 2020, published today by England's Department of Health

The NHS managers’ union, Managers in Partnership (MiP), today urged the health service to share responsibility for change with staff and the public in the next five years.

Responding to the publication of the Department of Health’s shared delivery plan for the NHS in England, Jon Restell, MiP’s chief executive, said:

‘Patients and the public are starting to feel the consequences of underfunding and rising demand in both health and social care. Everyone knows the NHS and its workforce are under intense pressure. It’s right that national leaders respond to the problems facing our services – and they need to share more responsibility for change with staff and the public.’

The union believes that the NHS needs to pay more attention to the workforce. Restell said:

‘We know quality of care and good use of resources goes hand in hand with an engaged and motivated workforce. For any plan to work staff must be on board and, as much as possible, leading and managing change themselves, as individuals and in teams.’

‘England’s fragmented system has understandably taken time to get its act together. But it must now play catch up on workforce. Even now no national body has a director for NHS workforce. What does that say?’

‘National leaders and planners must take staff with them, and talk to trade unions, before hard decisions are made. If they don’t, there are much higher risks of a demotivated workforce, resistant to change, and of more industrial action, nationally and locally. The junior doctors’ dispute tells us all we need to know about these risks to patient care.’

Commenting on the efficiency savings agenda, Restell said:

‘National leaders should boost the back office that provides essential support to frontline care, and give open support to leaders and managers. Talk of outsourcing and bearing down on admin costs is frankly demoralising for people who patients need working behind the scenes.’

The union was also worried about further cuts to the DH and its arm’s length bodies such as NHS England. Restell said:

‘Some things can only be done nationally. It needs to be asked whether the DH and its arm’s length bodies will have enough resource to support the NHS through the next five years. The DH, for example, will lose a third of its staff, on top of years of cuts. National bodies cut to the bone are a serious risk to delivery of the government’s plans.’

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