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Morale distress in the NHS

COVID-19 has significantly impacted the morale of NHS workers. According to the CEO of the NHS Confederation, Matthew Taylor, almost a third of staff have considered leaving the workforce.

A primary concern for the NHS is chronic workforce shortages, currently showing a spiralling downward trend. Approximately three quarters of NHS workers believe there is not enough staff to serve patients effectively and efficiently (NHS Confederation, 2022).

A consistent demand from the Government is for the NHS to continue to provide optimal services to patients despite increasing waiting lists and fewer healthcare workers on the frontline as well as behind the scenes. This has been distressing to many and has had an impact on overall mental health and wellbeing for both staff as well as service users. In coping with the ever-increasing demand on services, NHS staff work harder to continue to try to provide the quality care the NHS has built its reputation on over the years.

However, even when the demand slightly eased on the NHS during the summer months of 2020 and 2021, a considerable number of workers felt as if their work during the peak months of COVID-19 was not appreciated.

Doctors working hours were often extended to accommodate seeing patients, sometimes to 14-hour shifts, rewarded with a 1% rise in pay. During the pandemic, many feel that sacrifices made to care for patients outweigh staying, as a result there has been a surge of NHS workers leaving their employment leading to further shortages and increased backlogs and waiting lists.

Research has also found that nearly half of the NHS critical care staff are suffering from depression, PTSD and anxiety, and 20% of staff working in ICUs had contemplated self-harm or suicide (The Guardian, 2021). Unfortunately, some felt that support for their situation was not available or adequate, leaving them in a real ‘slump’.

With things going the way they are, the NHS is in for an enduring and challenging time. It is evident that the NHS needs as much support as it can get, for both the services it provides as well as for the health and wellbeing of its workers.

Health Staff Discounts exists to support NHS staff by encouraging businesses to provide NHS Discounts and providing a platform that staff can use to locate and access offers.

If you are a business owner or manager, consider showing your support to NHS staff by providing an NHS discount.  

Sarah @ Health Staff Discounts Sarah @ Health Staff Discounts
Published 06/25/2022 12:46
  • covid-19
  • morale
  • nhs conditions
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Claire Owen

I wonder how bank staff (those on short term ad hoc contract) are going to benefit from this... increased hourly rates, more hours?

replied 06/25/2022 13:11
Denis Hearn

The NHS this wonderful organisation, (envy of the world we are told, though more a laughing stock of the world) stopped being a NHS and became a CHS (Covid health service) during the Covid pandemic. This NHS/ CHS needs radical reform to make it into a viable organisation. If you compare us to say the Dutch system, who spend virtually the same pro rata as we do, and you will find it vastly superior to our mediocre sevice. They even managed to do two things at once, ie. cope with Covid and behave as a healthcare system at the same time, something which our NHS seemed incapable of doing.

replied 07/11/2022 19:23

Last Activity 09/22/2022 10:10