DCSIMG

999 staff still hit by high sickness rate

Bosses have unveiled plans to cut down the number of days lost due to sick leave at the North West Ambulance Service.

Bosses have unveiled plans to cut down the number of days lost due to sick leave at the North West Ambulance Service.

More than 110,000 full time days were lost as people working for the North West Ambulance Service called in sick last year.

That’s out of a possible 1,677,324 full time days, giving the service a sickness absence rate of 6.6 per cent.

The figures, released by the Health and Social Care Information Centre, show that ambulance services across the country have the highest amount of absence due to sickness, though the sickness rate of 5.82 is still below that of the North West.

They show the service in the North West has had a consistent sickness absence rate over the last five years and up until last year had a steady number of total possible full time working days. Between 2012 and 2014 the total days fell from 1,736,772 to 1,667,324.

Chief executive Bob Williams said: “Ambulance staff have a very physical role, so muscular, skeletal injuries are not uncommon. Add to this the fact that our crews face the threat of physical abuse and can deal with very traumatic incidents.”

Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has a sickness absence rate of 3.9 per cent, as between 2013 and 2014 it recorded 77,891 sick days out of a possible 2,007,330.

It’s a drop from a sickness rate of 5.3 per cent in 2009 to 2010 which has consistently fallen over the last five years despite an increase in the total possible full time days. A spokesman said: “We recognise the impact that absence can have on patient care and are pleased the figures have shown a steady reduction. We are not complacent and are working hard to reduce the absence level further.”

Blackpool Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has a sickness rate of just 1.7 cent, which is down from 5.3 per cent five years ago when it was Blackpool Primary Care Trust. Last year only 254 days were lost to sickness out of a possible 14,794. Over the years it has decreased its sickness rate, though the number of total possible days has also dropped from 264,107 in 2009 to 2010.
In the last year Fylde and Wyre CCG recorded 303 days lost to sickness out of a possible 11,557 days – a rate of 2.6 per cent.

 

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