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Last Updated: Saturday, 23 August, 2003, 01:19 GMT 02:19 UK
Hospital bosses win huge pay deal
Photograph of health system worker
Officials say equivalent bonuses will be available to all NHS staff
Hospital managers are set to receive 30% bonuses that would take their annual pay close to 200,000, it is reported.

The proposed bonuses would see senior managers taking home more than many consultants.

Foundation hospitals will be able to grant the bonuses without the approval of local health authorities, according to The Times newspaper.

Plans for foundation hospitals have already been bitterly opposed by many Labour MPs.

And the reported new pay deal will fuel concerns that foundation trusts will form an elite breakaway "premier league" able to attract the best managers and staff while other hospitals struggle to fill vacancies.

Patients, particularly those on waiting lists, will be outraged to hear chief executives who aren't exactly badly paid are going to benefit when the money could be better spent on patient care
Conservative health spokesman Simon Burns

The Department of Health says equivalent annual bonuses will be available to all NHS staff "from porters and nurses up to chief executives".

"It is important the NHS is able to attract and retain high calibre staff at all levels and this is just one of the ways we are doing it," a spokeswoman said.

But Conservative health spokesman Simon Burns told The Times: "The government may argue these bonuses are simply to help recruitment and retention - but what happens is five years down they line they get ingrained in the system and become the norm."

He added: "Patients, particularly those on waiting lists, will be outraged to hear chief executives who aren't exactly badly paid are going to benefit when the money could be better spent on patient care."

You won't get them if you don't pay them
Guy's and St Thomas's Hospital Trust chairwoman Patricia Mobley

London's Guy's and St Thomas's Hospital chief executive Dr Jonathan Michael earned 171,000 in 2001-2002, according to The Times.

Trust chairwoman Patricia Mobley defended his salary to the paper.

"We need high-quality chief executives.

""These people are rare.

"You won't get them if you don't pay them."




SEE ALSO:
Q&A: Consultant contract deal
17 Jul 03  |  Health
'We are desperately unhappy'
19 Jun 03  |  Health
No strikes please, we're doctors
18 Jun 03  |  Health
Minister hints at consultants deal
29 Jun 03  |  Politics
Consultants back strike ballot
19 Jun 03  |  Health
Consultants reject new contract
31 Oct 02  |  Health


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