Up to 620 NHS jobs set to go

Blackpool Victoria Hospital
Blackpool Victoria Hospital
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FYLDE hospital staff were today reeling after being warned up to 620 jobs could be axed.

E-mails were sent to all staff at Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre NHS Foundation Trust, informing them between 450 and 620 posts had to go in the next 15 months.

The news came after the trust was directed to find £50m in savings because of Government cuts to the NHS.

Today’s body blow for staff follows a damning report from independent NHS regulator Monitor, who issued a letter to the trust’s board in November warning it had made a “significant breach” in the way it governed the hospital and in its financial duties.

The trust, which includes Blackpool Victoria, Clifton, Fleetwood, Rossall hospitals, the Artificial Eye Service and Blenheim House, claims the blow will be softened because they have an annual turnover of 400 staff, and compulsory redundancies will be avoided at all costs.

Aidan Kehoe, trust chief executive, said: “Our current estimates show that hospital staffing levels need to reduce by between 450 and 620 posts over the next 15 months but we will do all we can to avoid compulsory redundancies.

“We have a staff turnover of an average of 10 per cent every year, which equates to around 400 posts, and have put in place voluntary redundancy schemes for non clinical staff as well.

Compulsory redundancies are a last resort and we will do all we can to avoid them.’

FOR MORE ON THIS STORY SEE MONDAY’S GAZETTE.