Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Hundreds of jobs may go at Queen Alexandra hospital

Queen Alexandra Hospital
Image caption The hospital has already cut 700 jobs and closed wards

Nearly two hundred nursing and midwifery jobs could be cut at the Queen Alexandra hospital in Portsmouth.

Figures seen by the BBC show that the hospital's trust is considering cutting up to 580 jobs as part of a plan to save £30m pounds this year.

Unions say the move will affect patient care. The trust says no final decision has been made.

The £256m Hampshire hospital, which opened 18 months ago, has already cut 700 jobs and closed 100 beds.

The latest figures form part of the hospital's workforce plan for the year, which the trust is required to give to the Strategic Health Authority.

It indicates how many members of staff will be employed. The figures included in the document are not binding.

Agency workers

Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust declined to comment on the figures but said it was only looking at 99 redundancies.

But unions say hundreds more agency and bank staff are set to lose their jobs.

Mike Wilson from Unison said: "Altogether in this financial year Portsmouth Hospitals Trust is looking to lose several hundreds [of jobs].

"They are not having to consult on the reduction in the bank and agency workers in the same way as they are obliged to consult on cuts to the permanent workforce.

"We simply cannot continue to cut the workforce and expect the same volume of work to be completed and the same level of service to be delivered to patients. Ultimately I think that some services are going to be ceased."

The proposals being considered include cutting full-time and agency nurses and 26 midwives. Up to 10% of the hospital's nursing staff could be cut, according to the figures.

The Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham was rebuilt using private finance and opened in July 2009.

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