UNISON PRESS RELEASE "Staff at St Georges Hospital, South London have acted with growing shock and anger at the announcement that 500 posts ( almost 10% of the workforce)at the hospital are to be axed as part of the Governments 20 billion NHS cuts programme.
St George's will now be forced to cut £50m from its annual budget, cut 500 medical nursing and health care posts close wards, cut approximately 100 beds, and cap the number of births in its Midwifery unit to 5,000 a year Posts affected include frontline doctors, nurses and professional staff.
Michael Walker, UNISON Regional Officer, states "In a week when the bankers are set to receive huge pay rises and multi million pound bonuses, we are going to witness the spectre at St George's of dedicated nurses, doctors and health staff losing their jobs. How can that be fair or right?"
Nurse Jane Pilgrim, UNISON Nursing Convenor at St Georges Hospital states:
"We were told by the Government that there would be no cuts in frontline posts but in reality the NHS is witnessing swingeing cuts to frontline services every day".
Geoff Thorne, UNISON St George's Branch Secretary stated: "Before the General Election Andrew Lansley visited St Georges Hospital and gave a personal guarantee to staff that there would be no frontline cuts in the NHS"
Nora Pearce UNISON Midwifery Convenor states: "Capping the number of births at St George's to just 3,000 a year will mean thousands of local women will no-longer be able to have their babies at St George's, denying them the back up and confidence they know comes from having a baby at an internationally renowned teaching hospital.
Michael Walker, UNISON Regional Officer stated: "UNISON will be working with St George's Hospital management to mitigate the impact of these cuts on patients and staff. Mr Lansley needs to urgently recognise the damage he is causing to the NHS with these unprecedented levels of cuts".
"We fear these cuts are just the prelude to even greater cuts in our NHS when the Government unleash GP Commissioning and GP's are forced to ration care. "We urge all local Member's of Parliament, of all political persuasion’s to intercede and urge Andrew Lansley the Conservative Secretary of State for Health to halt these disastrous cuts at St George's before patient care suffers.