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BMA: NHS relies too heavily on goodwill of its staff

11 December 2015

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The NHS relies too heavily on “the goodwill and extra effort” of it staff, the chair of the British Medical Association in Scotland said, in light of a new survey.

Nearly nine-in-10 of all NHS employees in Scotland are “happy to go the extra mile” at work, according to NHS Scotland’s annual staff survey of 60,681 employees.

“It is commendable that 89% of NHS staff say that they are happy to go the extra mile at work, but the fact is that the NHS relies too heavily on the goodwill and extra effort of its staff in order to meet patient needs,” chair of BMA Scotland Dr Peter Bennie commented.

Moreover, only 28% of staff who took part in the survey felt that they were always consulted about changes at work, and only one third of staff believed that there are enough NHS staff working to allow them to do their job properly.

Bennie (pictured) added: “Every vacant medical post in the health service puts additional strain on staff who have to attempt to plug the gaps in service. That is why the significant problems in recruiting and retaining doctors to posts in Scotland needs to be addressed as a matter of urgency.”

The health secretary, Shona Robison, said it is “vital” that the government learns from the survey findings, and all health boards will be expected to use their individual survey results to work with staff to bring in positive changes.

“We will also continue to work in partnership with professional bodies, unions and health boards to examine these findings and discuss how we will work to more effectively measure and further improve the experience of staff working in Scotland’s NHS,” Robison pledged.

See the full report here.