Philip Dunne calls on the Government to ensure that the senior-level changes in Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust’s management will not delay the Secretary of State’s consideration of the Independent Reconfiguration Panel’s report on proposed acute hospital reconfiguration.
The interim people plan sets out how the NHS will become a great employer with the culture and leadership needed to retain staff. NHS programmes to retain its highly talented staff are already having an impact. There are now more nurses working in the NHS than at any other time in its 70-year history. In addition, about 1 million NHS workers will benefit from the new Agenda for Change pay and contract deal.
I welcome the recent announcement of a consultation on NHS pensions arrangements for senior personnel. I hope that that will look at the taper impact, which raises the effective tax rate to an unacceptably high level. Retention of key personnel is critical across the Shropshire health economy, as well as in other parts of the country. Can my hon. Friend reassure me that senior-level changes in Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust’s management will not delay the Secretary of State’s consideration of the Independent Reconfiguration Panel’s report on proposed acute hospital reconfiguration?
I thank my right hon. Friend for his welcome for the pensions proposals and the consultation. The Department has received initial advice from the Independent Reconfiguration Panel on the Future Fit hospital reconfiguration. The Secretary of State is currently considering that. He will respond to the IRP’s advice in due course, and I will ensure that he informs my right hon. Friend.