Some hospital chief executives have been given pay rises of up to £35,000
NHS hospital chief executives have been handed pay rises of up to £35,000, with the highest annual earnings reaching a record £340,000, a Daily Telegraph investigation has found.
Despite government pledges that the most senior NHS managers would have their pay frozen, 40 per cent of trusts increased executives’ wages by at least £5,000 during 2014-15.
Some managers’ earnings rose by almost a quarter, the findings from more than 200 NHS trust boards show. Patients’ groups accused the NHS of “scandalous excesses” at a time when the health service is facing the greatest financial crisis in its history.
“Nursing staff have been repeatedly told that there isn’t enough money to improve their pay, even after years of pay restraint. To learn that many senior NHS staff are enjoying pay rises and bonuses while nurses struggle to make ends meet is immensely demoralising.”
Janet Davies, chief executive of the Royal College of Nursing
The head of the Royal College of Nursing said it was “immensely demoralising” to find that some executives had been awarded rises larger than a full year’s salary for the average nurse.
The highest individual increase of £35,000 went to Sir Andrew Morris, at Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust in Surrey, taking his earnings to £215,000. The 19 per cent rise followed a takeover of another nearby NHS trust. The finance director, Martin Sykes, also received a 19 per cent, or £25,000, increase in his earnings taking them to £155,000. Nicola Ranger, the director of nursing, enjoyed a 23 per cent boost, taking her earnings to £135,000.
Simon Barber, chief executive of 5 Boroughs Partnership trust in the North West, was paid £200,000 during 2014-15 – a rise of £25,000 thanks to a pay bonus.
David Sloman, chief executive of the Royal Free London Foundation Trust received a £20,000 rise, taking his earnings to £240,000. And Lewisham and Greenwich trust in south-east London awarded £20,000 pay rises to its chief executive, Tim Higgingson, whose salary rose to £195,000, and to its director of nursing, Claire Champion, boosting her earnings to £150,000.
In total, 40 per cent of boards made at least one pay rise of between £5,000 and £15,000.
At least 10 senior managers received rises of at least £20,000, according to the analysis by the Telegraph.
Because trust boards do not publish precise pay figures, the lowest point of published ranges was used for all calculations, leaving a £5,000 margin.
Dr Tracey Batten
The highest overall package went to Dr Tracey Batten, the chief executive of Imperial College Healthcare, who was paid £290,000 plus a £50,000 relocation payment to move from Australia.
Several of those with the highest earnings left the NHS in recent months. The second highest earner overall was Peter Morris, the chief executive of Barts Health trust, on £275,000 until he resigned in February amid a growing financial crisis. The trust is now facing a deficit of £135 million, the largest any trust has ever had.
Another of the highest earners, Dr Keith McNichol, who came from Australia to run Addenbrooke’s Hospital, resigned in September — just before a damning inspection report saw the trust plunged into special measures. A salary of at least £260,000 made him the fourth best paid chief executive.
Tim Smart, who earned £255,000 a year as chief executive of Kings College Hospital Foundation Trust, announced his retirement in April, just after an inspection which later saw the trust rated as “requiring improvement”.
Katherine Murphy, the chief executive of the Patients Association, said she was concerned that the NHS had developed a culture of “rewards for failure” with many of the highest salaries paid to chief executives who had left as serious problems emerged.
In March 2014, the Treasury promised most public sector workers a rise of one per cent in 2014-15, but said the most senior managers would see pay frozen, amid efforts to put the nation’s finances on a sustainable footing.
The NHS is facing the worst financial crisis in its history, with three quarters of trusts forecasting deficits, which are expected to reach £2.2 billion across the service by March.
The vast majority of overspending has been fuelled by a reliance on agency doctors and nurses, some on rates of more than £3,500 a day. Hospitals are also struggling to cope with rising demand from an ageing population.
Janet Davies, chief executive of the Royal College of Nursing, said: “Nursing staff have been repeatedly told that there isn’t enough money to improve their pay, even after years of pay restraint. To learn that many senior NHS staff are enjoying pay rises and bonuses while nurses struggle to make ends meet is immensely demoralising.”
The trusts with the most highly paid chief executives defended the sums paid, saying they were among the largest trusts in the country, with rates in line with those for similar roles in other NHS organisations.
A spokesman for Frimley Health said: “Recent salary adjustments in executive pay at Frimley Health were a reflection of the added responsibility associated with the acquisition of Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. These were independently assessed by the Hay Group and set by a committee of non-executive directors.”
When Frimley Park took over Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospitals the trust doubled in terms of staff, infrastructure, and patient numbers.
The 5 Boroughs Partnership NHS Foundation Trust said its chief executive had received a 1 per cent pay increase, plus a performance-related bonus which recognised that the trust had achieved quality and financial targets.
A spokesman for the Royal Free said it became one of the largest trusts in the country after taking over Barnet and Chase Farm hospitals in July 2014.
It said pay was agreed by a committee of non-executive directors based on value for money.
Lewisham and Greenwich trust said salaries were reviewed after a hospital merger, with the director of nursing taking on added responsibility as deputy executive.
By Laura Donnelly, Health Editor
12:42AM GMT 02 Jan 2016
news/health/12077917/NHS- hospital-bosses-given-pay- rises-worth-more-than-a- nurses-annual-salary.html?utm_ content=buffer91aca&utm_ medium=social&utm_source= twitter.com&utm_campaign= buffer