The union for health and care managers

Home  >  News & Campaigns  >  News Articles  >  Summit 2018 – Staff bear the brunt of deliberate Treasury underfunding
Monday 26 November 2018

Summit 2018 – Staff bear the brunt of deliberate Treasury underfunding

By Craig Ryan

John Restell speaking at Summit
Photo: Stefano Cagnoni
Restell: “The effort to push over the NHS in recent years has, it seems, come from the government itself.”

“Deliberate underfunding” of health and care services by the Treasury is creating “great hardship for the people of this country and putting huge pressure on staff,” MiP chief executive Jon Restell told MiP’s Member’s Summit on 6 November.

In his opening speech to delegates, Restell promised that MiP “will not stop banging the drum on funding for both NHS and social care” and warned that it was a “betrayal of the public” to pretend that services could be improved by “great management and efficiencies alone”.

Referring to Chancellor Phillip Hammond’s remarks, made during his budget speech on 29 October, that “it’s time for the public sector to stop being pushovers”, Restell said: “How very dare he! Not only are our members not pushovers, but the effort to push over the NHS in recent years has, it seems, come from the government itself.”

He said the Treasury had “wholly misjudged” the growth in demand for services and the extent to which it could be met by efficiencies rather than better funding. “And the Treasury reckoned without the Lansley reforms  which – and we will not stop saying this – cost so much money and lost so many good people from public service, making the funding squeeze much, much worse.”

Restell highlighted the finding of a recent MiP members’ survey that managers believe social care and mental health services have the most urgent funding shortfalls.

“Parents and carers are increasingly experiencing a system designed to keep them out rather than give them the support they need,” he said. “This is not what public services should be like in the world’s fifth largest economy.”

The survey also found that MiP members believe personal taxation is the only credible way to fund health and care services in the long term. “They know you can’t have Scandinavian-level services paid for by a US tax base,” Restell said, “but where is the honest debate on this from politicians?”

Although underfunding has “failed to push the NHS over”, the workforce have borne the brunt of the policy through attacks on pay, cuts in infrastructure and support jobs, and damage to careers and personal wellbeing, Restell warned.

“You demonstrated magnificently that, whatever Phillip Hammond might think, you and your colleagues are not pushovers,” he said. “But the magnificent effort of recent years cannot be sustained forever.”

This summer’s three-year pay deals were “just the start”, he explained. “They end the destructive pay policy, but they don’t restore what has been lost. We now need a decade of investment in pay and conditions for NHS staff.

“This investment must be mirrored by an unprecedented investment in the pay of social care staff, the neglect of whom as a workforce is a national disgrace,” he added.

If you enjoyed this article, please sign up to receive our free monthly emails - and we’ll keep you up to date on news and events in health and care management

Woman holding her head in her hands at a desk

Despite recent tax changes and legal doubts hanging over improvements to the scheme, the NHS pension scheme remains one of the best on offer. MiP reports on recent developments, and explains how to keep your retirement plans on track.

15 May 2019 | By Alison Moore
Scissors cutting paper chain in half
Manchester's Health and Social Care Partnership chief officer Jon Rouse

Manchester’s Health and Social Care Partnership is blazing a trail for integrated services. Its chief officer Jon Rouse tells MiP about the most complex and enjoyable job of his life

08 May 2019 | By Matt Ross
Greater Manchester health and care chief Jon Rouse
Leeds: the city will host MiP's North Summit on 12 June

30 April 2019 | By Craig Ryan
Simon Stevens

We explain how MiP is standing up for members affected by the restructuring of NHS England and NHS Improvement, and negotiating to ensure this massive organisational change programme is managed fairly.

01 April 2019 | By MiP
MiP at work
Women's TUC Conference in London on 6-8 March 2019

20 March 2019 | By Mercedes Broadbent

We explain the legal position behind so-called ‘gagging’ clauses which are now a common feature of settlement agreements in the NHS.

12 March 2019 | By Natalie Hunt
Legal Eye

GPs and local councils working together to improve public health is the best way to make the NHS financially sustainable, argues one GP federation manager.

12 March 2019 | By Anonymous
The Sharp End
Tipster cartoon - "Your suspension is a 'neutral act' - no one is judging you Ann..."

Suspension can damage your career but doesn’t have to be a disaster. We explain how to limit the damage and improve your chances of a successful return to work.

04 March 2019 | By Ruth Smith
Find us
FDA MiP section, 6th floor, Elizabeth House, 39 York Road, London, SE1 7NQ
Copyright © 2018 MiP