Barts and the London NHS Trust scraps 635 jobs

Photo: Glyn Baker

Barts and the London NHS Trust is to scrap more than 600 jobs over the next two years as it attempts to reach government efficiency targets.

Out of the 635 jobs that are to go, more than 250 nursing posts will be lost, which accounts for 10 per cent of the Trust’s total nurses. There are expected to be 200 compulsory job losses with 83 fewer clinical posts, 220 fewer administrative posts and 72 corporate roles being closed.

The cuts will affect the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel , the London Chest Hospital in Bethnal Green, and St Bartholomew’s Hospital in the City of London.

A Trust spokeswoman said: “We do not expect any compulsory redundancies among frontline clinical staff, but jobs will change and we will be asking staff to be flexible by moving into new roles, and filling existing and future vacancies which arise from our 10 per cent annual staff turnover.”

However, Karen Jennings, Unison’s head of health said: “How is the trust meant to run with hundreds fewer health workers, including 250 less nurses? This explodes the myth that the cuts are all back office jobs. Quite clearly this is about frontline clinical staff and services to patients.”

The government has told the NHS to reduce costs by £20 billion in the next three years. The NHS budget is currently £100 billion.

According to the latest figures from the NHS Information Centre, Barts has 2,447 full-time nursing, midwifery and health visiting posts. Some nurses will be replaced by healthcare assistants, who are cheaper to employ.

Dr Peter Carter, chief executive of the Royal College of Nursing, said it was “outrageous that such a large number of staff could be lost from the frontline”.

He added: “The idea that such a thing could be done without seriously jeopardising patient care is ludicrous. How on earth do they think that hospitals and community services are going to cope?”

Barts and The London Trust is also in the running to take over two smaller hospital trusts, Whipps Cross University NHS Trust and Newham University Hospital NHS Trusts.

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