Health bosses apologise for mix up over domestic staff

Ian Frame, South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust's executive director.
Ian Frame, South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust's executive director.

Health bosses have apologised for a “miscommunication” which saw staff fearing they had lost their jobs.

Staff from South Tyneside District Hospital contacted the Gazette claiming all the “bank” staff of domestic and porter staff, were being scrapped and people would have to clean their own work areas.

However, Ian Frame, South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust’s executive director, personnel and development, said this is not the case.

He said: “Unfortunately, due to some miscommunication, for which we apologise, it appears that some staff thought that there were imminent cutbacks planned in our domestic team. I can confirm that our current arrangements for employing trained domestic staff from the ‘bank’, which supplements our permanent team when shifts need to be covered, will continue and that employed staff will continue to work in accordance with their normal arrangements.

“We can also give total reassurance that there have been no discussions about reduced cleaning of key clinical areas and that non-domestic staff will not be asked to clean any areas in their workplace themselves.”

However, he added: “Like most NHS trusts, we are facing considerable financial constraints and we are continually reviewing areas for additional efficiencies, which could provide a financial benefit whilst not impacting in any way on our clinical services.

“Patient safety is our number one priority in all that we do.”