Millions being invested to improve on-call facilities

  • Dawn O'Shea
  • UK Professional News
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Every trust in England will receive additional funding towards improving rest facilities, following an agreement reached between the Government and BMA.

The BMA has announced that £6.3 million is being invested across 210 trusts in England, each of which will receive a minimum of £30,000 to assist in developing or improving rest and sleep facilities for on-call staff.

Following this initial investment, which will take place during the 2019-20 financial year, a further £3.7 million will be distributed among 122 trusts identified as requiring additional support to improve on-site facilities.

The funding comes as a result of negotiations and agreement reached between the association and Department of Health and Social Care as part of the 2018 junior doctors contract review.

Commenting on the announcement, BMA junior doctors contract chair, Jeeves Wijesuriya said: “This much-needed investment from the Department of Health and Social Care, as an early outcome from the 2018 junior doctors contract review, is extremely welcome and an example of how targeted funding can make a tangible difference to working lives of junior doctors.

“It has been encouraging to see the overwhelmingly supportive response from hospital trusts, all of whom have now endorsed the BMA’s Fatigue and Facilities Charter, recognising the importance of adequate, free to use rest facilities for staff. Improving the working environment is a key driver in retaining NHS staff.

“While there is a still a long way to go to alleviating the enormous pressure on juniors and achieving the work/life balance, a commitment of this kind is a significant step which we hope will start to make stories of doctors being injured or worse when driving home after long shifts, a thing of the past,” he added.

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