Intended for healthcare professionals


Will the NHS pay awards help recruitment?

BMJ 1999; 318 doi: (Published 10 April 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;318:958

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Not on their own

  1. Stephen Machin, Professor of economics, University College, and director
  1. ndustrial Relations Programme, Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics, London WC2A 2AE

    Much has been made of the plight of NHS employees, ranging from observations on falling pay relative to other sectors, low morale, and severe recruitment and retention problems. The restructuring of the methods of pay setting, an ageing population, and a deteriorating public image of the NHS have all contributed to the problems the NHS has faced as an employer in recent years. Will the above inflation pay awards to health professionals, implemented this month, have eased these problems?

    The pay review bodies have been central to the problem, as the last government in effect used them to facilitate the decentralisation of pay determination to local level. Some industrial relations experts have argued that this, together with the lack of extra government funding, has been key to the pay inequities and industrial relations …

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