What are nurses worth?

25 March 2021
Volume 30 · Issue 6

I have been reflecting recently on the lessons I have learned over my life and those I have learned the most from. At Keele and Manchester Universities (and earlier at Rossall School), I learned about economics and finance. Before university, I learned about nursing and caring from my mother who was an enrolled nurse. Before following in my mother's nursing footsteps, I served in the army and learned about fighting from my father who was a career soldier and the boxing coach of the army championship team. In many ways I learned how to fight long before I learned how to nurse.

Recently I have been drawing on many of those lessons. As Chair of Council of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN), I wanted to set out our position on the economics of nurses' pay, the impact on nursing and how we plan to fight the Government.

The Government announced in its March budget a reduction in NHS funding and no allocation for a pay increase for nurses. We then found that the Government's recommendation to the Pay Review Body was that nurses should receive a 1% pay award.

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