First Community urges fair play in NHS pay agreement

Published on 07/06/2018

Updated 8 June 2018

First Community is pleased that union members have voted in favour of the pay deal for Agenda for Change staff. It is now time for the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to make sure  the three year pay deal for NHS staff is extended to social enterprises providing NHS services. 

Sarah Billiald, First Community CEO, said: 

‘The pay deal currently on the table makes no sense as it’s only for some NHS employees and not all. Until this year, every NHS pay settlement has been the same for all organisations providing NHS services offering Agenda for Change terms and conditions. At First Community all our  clinicians and support staff are on NHS Agenda for Changes terms and conditions*, are entitled to NHS pensions and have NHS on their name badges, yet they are not being treated equally. I urge the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to correct this anomaly straight away. 

‘It is extremely unsettling for colleagues across First Community, many of whom have worked within the NHS for decades. We have a highly engaged workforce (one of the highest in England as measured by the 2017 NHS staff survey) who provide health and care services of the highest quality. The current proposal is simply unfair.’

First Community is a high performing and award-winning community interestcompany set up in 2011 under the Government’s Transforming Community Services Right to Request process. It was rated CQC Outstanding in 2017, making it one of the top 2% of organisations inspected by CQC. Patients and service user consistently rate services provided by First Community very highly in NHS Friends and Family feedback.

First Community has a contract with East Surrey CCG to provide a wide range of NHS adult nursing and therapy community services and a minor injury unit and in-patient ward at Caterham Dene Hospital. It also offers some NHS services in Crawley and Horsham and provides children and family services across Surrey as part of Children and Family Health Surrey.

 ‘As a community interest company, First Community has to balance our books. Our income comes from the contracts we have the NHS CCGs. To attract and retain clinical and support staff to provide NHS services, we have always offered NHS Agenda for Change terms and conditions and NHS pensions. The current situation threatens to destabilise our motivated and engaged workforce,’ added Sarah Billiald.

 *except for two senior posts.

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For more information contact: Jenny Rawlinson at  First Community, 01737 775 462

Notes for editors:

• 2017 NHS Staff survey  engagement score of 4.08/5.00 equating to a ‘highly engaged workforce’

• NHS Friends and Family feedback – average score of more than 4.80/5.00

First Community is an award-winning organisation which is part of the NHS family delivering community healthcare services in east Surrey and the surrounding area. We offer a friendly face with highly rated, well-run services, delivered by our skilled people. We provide high-quality nursing and therapy services, children and family services as well as an in-patient ward and minor injury unit at Caterham Dene Hospital. First Community was rated overall Outstanding by CQC in 2017.

Under the CIC model, any surplus has to be re-invested for community benefit.