At the East London Foundation Trust on the 3rd June 2019, the Secretary of State, Matt Hancock, gave a speech about how the NHS can be compared to Estonia if it were a country because there are currently 1.3 million people in the NHS.
Hancock stated that since becoming the Health Secretary, he has tried to meet as many of the 1.3 million staff members as possible. What is clear to him, is that the people in the NHS are the most important asset they have. The people are the future of the NHS so it is vital that they are looked after and treated well.
Furthermore, Hancock went on to say that the NHS is the most indispensable public service we as a country have, and along with strong public services, the NHS is the foundation of a solid and successful society. Britain must continue to invest in and uplift the people to improve things.
The NHS has appointed Prerana Issar as the first to ever to be awarded the title of “NHS Chief People Officer”. Together with Dido and her team, they have created the NHS People Plan. Hancock praises both of them for the work they are doing, because taking care of the NHS and its people is crucial to the success of the NHS.
There are 3 people who illustrate the past, present and future of the NHS. They are recruitment, retention and a NHS that prioritizes its people. The first is recruitment, and refers to the nurses that don’t yet live in the country and are currently living in places like Poland, India and the Philippines. They are looking to the NHS for opportunity, and for excellence. A place where they can grow, learn and earn an income. Where they can potentially become a citizen and build a better life in Britain. The NHS needs the help of these qualified nurses to deliver world-class healthcare services.
The second one is the British student. There are 18 year olds who are considering nursing as a career, but they only ever read about the negative aspects, like the shortages and challenges that nurses face. The NHS People Plan wants to change the way people see nursing, and address the nursing shortage by encouraging permanent positions to be filled, instead of having so many agency placements.
Thirdly, Hancock spoke about the men on the frontline. They are concerned with taking extra shifts because of the tax implications, so as part of the NHS People Plan, there will be new pension packages for senior staff such as GP’s, doctors and senior nurses. These new pension plans will encourage extra shifts and encourage them to strive for promotion which will reward their hard work and encourage them to stay.
Staff consultations will begin next month to discuss all the options and details of the NHS Pension Scheme.
Hancock ended off by saying: “Let’s work together to ensure the NHS is a place where everyone feels valued, where everyone feels cared for, and where everyone can fulfil their potential”.