Agency nurse paid more than £1000 a shift

October 8, 2007

The NHS is spending millions of pounds each year on agency nurses, it emerged last night, with one hospital paying a nurse more than £1000 for a single shift.

Figures obtained under the Freedom of Information (FoI) laws show trusts are spending huge sums on expensive temporary staff a result of being forced to cut the number of permanent nurses.

The data reveals that Chesterfield Royal Hospital trust paid a senior staff nurse £98 an hour – or nine times the average for a full-time employee – to cover a Bank Holiday shift.

North Devon District Hospital in Barnstaple paid an even higher hourly rate, recruiting a specialist paediatric nurse at £115.65 an hour.

The bill for an eight and a half hour shift on New Year’s Eve came to a total of £983.

The figures come from an FoI request to 138 hospital trusts, of which 58 replied.

Of the trusts which responded, 11 admitted having paid more than £700 for a single shift.

These included Portsmouth, Worcester Acute, Royal Cornwall, Yeovil, Taunton and Somerset, Shrewsbury and Telford, Southampton University, East Sussex and Stockport.

North Devon spent £3.98 million on agency staff last year – more than four per cent of its entire budget.

Earlier this year the Commons public accounts committee said more than £1 billion a year was being spent on agency nurses.

Agency nurse paid more than £1000 a shift – Telegraph


MPs attack £2bn consultants bill

June 19, 2007

The government spends nearly £2bn a year on external consultants, often without adequately measuring value for money, a committee of MPs has said.

Whitehall spent £1.8bn of the public sector’s £2.8bn bill for 2005-6, a 33% rise in three years, the report said.

Public Accounts Committee chairman Edward Leigh said tighter controls could save £500m a year.

BBC NEWS | Politics | MPs attack £2bn consultants bill