Around 28% of NHS staff work overtime for no additional pay, the NHS Staff Survey 2015 has revealed.
The survey of nearly 300,000 people working for the NHS found that nearly three quarters of staff reported that they did not work any paid overtime above their contracted weekly hours, but only 40% of staff did not work any unpaid overtime each week. It has been suggested that this is due to the NHS having inadequate numbers of staff to fully perform their workload.
The RCN’s chief executive Janet Davies said: ‘Despite all the rhetoric about the importance of patient safety, NHS staff are still reporting inadequate staffing levels with only 30% saying that their organisation has enough staff for them to do their job properly.’
This situation has impacted the wellbeing of NHS staff, with 37% of all staff reporting feeling unwell due to work related stress and pressure. Additionally, 63% of staff reported coming to work in the last three months despite feeling that they cannot perform their duties or the requirements demanded by their job.
‘As a result almost two thirds of staff are coming to work despite feeling unable to perform their duties,’ added Ms Davies. ‘This would not happen if they did not feel services were stretched to breaking point.’
The survey also highlighted issues with communication between management and frontline staff. It found that while 82% of staff know who the senior manager in their organisation is, only 38% thought that communication between management and staff was effective, while 68% thought that senior management did not try to involve frontline staff in decision making.
‘For all the talk about improving services for patients and improving the working culture of the NHS, this survey shows that staff are still not being involved in decisions, still not being given the support they need to do their jobs properly, and still not being valued,’ said Ms Davies.