HEALTH chiefs say disruption will be kept to a minimum as hospital staff get ready to strike in South Tyneside.
Unison staff and other trade unions employed by South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust will be going on strike between 9am and 9pm on Thursday.
The 12-hour walk out is in protest over the Government’s decision to reject the one per cent pay rise for NHS staff as recommended by the independent Pay Review Body in 2014 and the fact most will be denied a pay increase in 2015/16.
However, bosses at South Tyneside District Hospital in South Shields, have said most services should still be operating as normal.
Ian Frame, the Trust’s executive director in personnel and development, said: “Some trade unions representing staff employed by South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust in hospital services in South Tyneside and community services in South Tyneside, Gateshead and Sunderland are planning a 12-hour strike on Thursday, January 29, from 9am to 9pm, over the Government’s national position on pay for NHS workers.
“We have held constructive talks with the unions involved and we have plans in place to ensure that we are able to maintain the safety and quality of our services and we are hopeful that we can keep any disruption to patients to a minimum.”
He added: “Most services should be operating as normal but we apologise if there are any delays due to staff and transport shortage and we would like to thank patients and visitors in advance for their patience and understanding in these circumstances, which are beyond our control.”