South West NHS regional pay plan anger: MP Ben Bradshaw

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Plans by NHS trusts across south-west England to introduce regional pay are causing concern and anger among staff across the region, a Devon MP has said.

In a leaked document, 20 hospitals and foundation trusts said they were looking at regional pay.

In the House of Commons, Exeter Labour MP Ben Bradshaw said workers' families were also worried.

Leader of the House Andrew Lansley, Conservative, said he would raise the issue with health officials.

Details of the regional pay proposals were first made public through a document leaked to the BBC in June and NHS staff have already staged a series of protests.

The leaked document said the trusts aimed to bring forward proposals on regional pay by October.

In their discussion document, the trusts said the aim of regional pay was to seek "greater security for health services and staff".

'Concern and anger'

Employees and unions have reacted angrily to the plans, saying they could result in cuts to salaries, sick pay, holiday entitlement and extra payments made for working anti-social hours.

Speaking in the Commons on Thursday, Mr Bradshaw said: "In May, the deputy prime minister said: 'There is going to be no regional pay system. That is not going to happen'.

"Yet 20 NHS trusts in south-west England have announced they intend abandon the NHS's national agenda for change pay structure and adopt just such a regional pay system.

"This is causing great concern and anger among NHS workers in the South West and their families."

Mr Lansley said NHS bosses were not acting on any government orders to look into regional pay.

The former health secretary added: "I will, of course, raise this issue with the Department of Health on his behalf."

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