Responding to the announcement that NHS workers in England will receive a pay rise for NHS staff of 6.5% over the next 3 years after staff voted in favour of the offer, Layla Moran MP has called on the Government to go further and provide an Oxfordshire housing allowance for NHS staff, as well as improvements in the social care sector, to tackle problems in the health and social care sector in the county.
Commenting, Oxford West and Abingdon’s Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran said:
"A pay rise for hardworking NHS staff is long overdue and this is a step in the right direction – although I do have concerns that a 6% pay rise over 3 years will still be below inflation.
“However, the Government must now go further and introduce an Oxfordshire housing allowance for NHS staff to tackle the county’s recruitment and retention crisis. If we don’t recognise that NHS staff are struggling to cope with the high costs of housing in our area we will never recruit and keep the clinical and support staff we need.
“The Government must recognise that the situation in Oxfordshire is different to the rest of the country and ensure that this is reflected in the pay settlement given to local NHS staff.
“It is also vital that pay and working conditions are improved in the social care sector too. A shortage of social care staff is contributing to bed blocking, including at the John Radcliffe hospital where hundreds can’t leave hospital as they wait for a social care placement. I fear this is contributing to the problems the hospital has been facing in recent weeks and months as routine operations were cancelled.”