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AIBU?

To stop working in the NHS

69 replies

Sounbelievablydull · 10/06/2017 19:12

I keep reflecting on Theresa mays comment to a nurse that the there is no magic money tree.
I am a nurse my pay has been static for ages.
I am lucky that my husband keeps our financial boat afloat but if he didn't we'd be sunk.
Many of my friends have jumped ship gone to work in industry or in private hospitals.Many of the nurses I work with are doing bank work to keep their families going and as a consequence are exhausted and burnt out.
I feel very proud of the work I do and I do receive a lot of gratitude from patients, but I am feeling like I am a voluntary worker at times when I see what my pay is.
I am thinking of doing something a lot easier for similar money-have been offered a job- but do feel guilty at letting people down

OP posts:
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PaulDacresFeministConscience · 11/06/2017 10:14

YANBU. People like you are keeping the NHS afloat, so thank you. It will be a shame if you go, but you have to think about your own health and family.

I have a friend who was driven to the brink of suicide working in the NHS. The pressure, the hours and the burnout was horrendous and she snapped - after 25 years of service. She sacrificed a huge amount of her pension by walking away, but she literally couldn't take it any more.

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PortiaCastis · 11/06/2017 10:28

The actual point that needs addressing is if nurses all feel like crying when they get ready for work and so then go on to resign what the hell are we going to do?
Not getting at you OP just saying something needs to change. Last week we had nursing staff running to help in their spare time after a lot of cowards committed atrocities. Why the fuck are these people not properly paid and appreciated
To quote Joni Mitchell "you don't know what you've got til it's gone"

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Onthehighseas · 11/06/2017 10:34

Its entirely your choice whether to quite or not. For me, the pay when taken alongside the benefits in the NHS is a reasonable package.

I'm confused about the mileage payment not covering your petrol costs. There must be a mistake in what you are getting as I've claimed mileage in the NHS for years and the mileage allowance has always covered all my costs, mileage and running. How much do you get per mile? Re business travel, the last two companies I've insured with have included it for free, so you might want to shop around for that.

all NHS staff were moved to the new worse NHS pension scheme - it's not optional! Sorry, but that is incorrect. I have remained in the 1995 scheme. Your options were dependent on your age at the time of the 'Choices 2' exercise. If you were too young to be able to stay in the old scheme, then it is only any new contributions that will be made to the new scheme, any contributions to the old scheme stay in that one. The new scheme is 1/54ths, the 1995 scheme is a 1/80th scheme so it isn't necessarily going to be worse for all.

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Dingalingalingaling · 11/06/2017 11:03

I don know what the this that and the others are?
Right to paid time off for family emergencies (other jobs it's unpaid or comes out of annual leave), time off for medical appointments, and for other things I don't know off the top of my head. I'm not saying don't do it, what I'm saying is a remuneration package is more than just the take home pay.

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Dingalingalingaling · 11/06/2017 11:11

And I think people are referring to the old NHS pension scheme, which was good (final salary, 6% contribution) but has been replaced by the new scheme. And it's not so good; career average earnings with 12% contributions.
Still a hell of a lot better than a private pension that isn't linked to salary and you'd have to pay a lot more than 12% to get an equivalent value.

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MoreProseccoNow · 11/06/2017 11:16

There is no guaranteed right to paid time off for family emergencies; it is all discretionary. As is time off for medical appointments (we are expected to owe time back & quite often too short-staffed to take them in the 1st place). I use annual leave for these things, as does my DP who works in the private sector.

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pigletpie29 · 11/06/2017 11:18

My SIL was a sister on a burns unit - she could hardly pay her a mortgage on a studio flat, it was appalling how little valued was placed on her skills.

She emigrated to Australia and now earns over double what she earned here and has a beautiful two bed flat with a sea view and work/life balance is so much better. It shouldn't be that way though, obviously.

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SteppingOnToes · 11/06/2017 11:20

I'm confused about the mileage payment not covering your petrol costs

A lot of trusts pay public transport rate at 23p per mile regardless of the transport you use, claiming the possibility of using a pool car. 23p is an amount that was set in 1996 and hasn't been reviewed since. Wesome trusts now cannot claim parking back either since all staff have to pay parking. So if you visit 3 sites in a day and have to pay for 3 lots of parking - tough.

Still a hell of a lot better than a private pension that isn't linked to salary and you'd have to pay a lot more than 12% to get an equivalent value

I hate this race to the bottom mentality. Private sector pays better - the only perks were the pension and now that has been chipped away at and job security that no longer exists...

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TheFairyCaravan · 11/06/2017 11:28

Some of the comments on here are so naive.

If we're not careful we're going to lose our public services. Not just because of the Tory party's ideology but because we can't recruit and retain and morale is so low.

DS2 is a 2nd year student nurse. His enthusiasm for working in the NHS fades with each day of his placements. He loves what he does but very often he and his mentors can't do it because the resources just aren't there. Last week he said that he's seriously thinking of emigrating.

It's a similar situation in education, teachers are going to be losing their jobs because the heads can't make ends meet. The police and armed forces are on their knees too.

Something needs doing and it needs doing fast.

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Arkengarthdale · 11/06/2017 11:45

Not everyone who works in the NHS is a nurse. I'm an administrator/secretary. When I started the medical secretaries were Band 4, PAs were Band 5, business support managers could be Band 6. In my trust they had so many restructures of the admin teams and ended with with the managers (of a team of 40+) on Band 5, PAs Band 4 and med secs Band 3 at most. So many job got downbanded but the level of responsibility and workload increased by a ridiculous amount. They replaced my experienced Band 3s with apprentices and still expected all the work and more to be done. It was shocking. I managed a few years and left. We had to reduce the quality of the admin support we provided in order to cope with the workload, compromising our professional integrity and reducing job satisfaction to zero. It was absolutely crap.

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Onthehighseas · 11/06/2017 11:47

Stepping, that's really unfortunate. The rates are set out in the A4C Handbook, unless negotiated separately (as they are in our organisation as it is done in a way which benefits more staff given the nature of their travel). Standard current rate is 56p/mile for the first 3500 miles.

I've never worked for an NHS organisation that pays such a public transport rate and have just totted up that I've worked for 7 of them where mileage has been paid. That might be worth a challenge.

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Kokusai · 11/06/2017 12:37

I'm confused about the mileage payment not covering your petrol costs

Even if your trust only pays 23p a mile you can claim the difference back up to the rate set by HMRC (40p? 50p?) if you do a tax return.

You can also claim back your registration fees and potentially CPD costs.

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FastAbsorbingCake · 11/06/2017 13:36

Ex-Nurse here. Loved the job & patients, but the politics…

There were a lot of BIG things where I should have left but it was a small thing that tipped me over.

Big things:
Finding out thanks to Agenda For Change that my newly qualified Staff Nurse was on a higher rate than me....

Been told to suck it up when I asked for extra staff as it had been seen fit to admit a floridly psychotic patient to a general med ward. Said patient was a risk to himself, other patients & staff.

Been harrased daily when off sick having been attacked by said patient (broke my arm in 2 places) when was I coming back, couldn't I do 'light' duties etc, no concern for me.

Been called in on a day off to write a statement justifying why I'd chucked a patients magazine. Patient had arrested, we spent 2 hours trying to get this person to the point where they were stable enough to move to ITU, seriously every time we tried to move them another crisis. Magazine was covered in blood so was a biohazard. But I had to give up a day off to write a statement.

Been told by HR that I wasn't entitled to compassionate leave for my fathers funeral, as it only applied to immediate family. …pointed out that I was unmarried and childless therefore my parents/siblings were my immediate family. Was told no immediate family was husband/wife/child. Thankfully Unsion stepped in there.

The constant emotional blackmail to stay late/ cover shifts etc.

As I was in the NHS so long I was on the top level of leave 42 days. I can honestly say I never got/took my entitlement. And no pay back/ roll over. My fault for not taking it, except I'd apply and it would be refused……🙄🙄🙄

The constant headaches & cystitis from dehydration. Management felt that any drinks at the nurses station was unprofessional, but not taking breaks was our fault for bad time management. Yea you try caring for 30 highly dependant patients with only 5 staff.

The tipping point…
Escaping to the loo 8 hours in to a 12 1/2 hr shift, pee so concentrated (1 it stung (2 if it had come from a patient I would have been pushing for IV fluids. And while peeing in pain taking handover for a patient…

I now work for a pharma, a bit less leave, double the pay, off sick, got flowers, OH have a rule that line managers do not contact staff off sick in case you feel pressured. Sick leave 6 months full pay, 5 years 80% pay.

Great pension plan.

And people wonder why well educated Nurses are leaving in the NHS in droves…

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NameChanger22 · 11/06/2017 13:41

My take hope pay is less than £1,000 a month. I haven't had a pay rise for 14 years. I think some people need to get a grip. Half the country earns less than £16,000.

I'm not saying NHS staff don't deserve a pay rise, just that there are a lot of people,, earning a lot less, who could do with one first.

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MeadowDream · 11/06/2017 13:48

For your pay to be "static for ages" you must be at the top of your band? And to be a prescriber I can assume this is a band 6 role rather than band 5. Top of band 6 pay without enhancements is £35,577 full time. Take home pay for this wage is approx £2300pm. Hardly voluntary is it?

I agree that us nurses should be on more money and our skills should be recognised more. But it does annoy me when people complain about a wage that is in fact not too shabby. We are very lucky really, I earn more than all my friends who went to uni and did different courses than me and have worked in their various fields for the same length of time as me.

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NameChanger22 · 11/06/2017 13:57

I know one nurse. She's earning £35,000, she's only been a nurse for 5 years. She has very generous holiday allowance.

I know lots and lots of people who went to university and hardly any of them are earning that much. Most are earning less than £20,000, some considerably less.

I'n bored of hearing how badly paid nurses are. Most of them earn a good salary, for doing a very demanding (but rewarding) job. Most people do very demanding jobs, without the rewards or pay.

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spidey66 · 11/06/2017 14:18

Who know's - mental health has been sold to virgin now so those staff won't have an NHS pension any more and their old one will be frozen. (Not all sold off yet but has for many trust already, along with sexual health)

Some is now under Virgin, but it's very much a minority. The vast majority of NHS mental health care still comes under the NHS.

My husband and myself both work in mental health in the NHS and have done for several years. He has mental health officer status and can retire any time. Unfortunately I spent 7 years working privately, and have as result lost this. I can retire early, with a reduced NHS pension though. I bitterly regret working outside the NHS now and am unlikely to do it again. The NHS aint perfect, but the t&cs aren't bad and I am firmly committed to its principles.

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Blaaaaaaaah · 11/06/2017 14:21

Yep namechanger. After I had my twins last year I needed to come home because I have an older child to care for. They were early but there was no real reason for us to stay in but the hospital were really dragging their feet about discharging us. The nurses literally could not compute that my husband couldn't take indefinite time off work because if he doesn't work he doesn't get paid. It was just an absolutely alien concept to them.

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missyB1 · 11/06/2017 14:27

I left two years ago, I was band 6 and had been nursing for 26 years, and no the pay wasn't worth it, neither was the stress, the low morale and the constant harassment from management.

Its not just Nurses either, my husband is a Consultant and takes home less now than he did in 2009, we have the pay slips to prove it. And again its not just the pay issue for him its the lack of money to invest in services / equipment for his patients. And the constant lies and criticism from the Government. Its just demoralising and depressing. He never thought he be thinking of jumping ship from the NHS - like many of his colleagues are doing.

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