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Downside of seven-day working

I read the article ‘Seven days a week’ with interest.

Although there is no argument against seven-day working, its implementation with regards to resources is crucial.

The trust I work for was requested to provide a seven-day working service across all acute physiotherapy teams by our commissioning acute hospital trust, with immediate effect. The hasty consultation process and fast change of contracts were dominated by worry about the security of the contract without the requested compliance, and the standard of service offered to patients.  

Unlike Guys and St Thomas’ foundation trust, which had the added luxury of an increase of staff and funds (the exact figure not provided), we had to spread the same limited resources more sparingly – a five-day service over the seven-day working week.

A year on, many of the potential risks we highlighted, such as teams with a decrease in staffing and decreased training opportunities, are ringing true. This results in an increase in stress and a drop in morale.

I am very much in favour of seven-day working, but trusts must ensure that staff levels are suitable. An increase in funds is also a necessity to cope with this change so that employees’ health and career development does not suffer.
Name and address supplied


Value of cpd videos

I have just viewed the three CPD videos on the associates page on the CSP website. I am impressed with the quality and the narrative of them all.

I was at a session that was covered and website really does portray the day very much like it was. Lots of listening, discussion and forward planning. Mairead O’Siochru, Penny Bromley and CSP associates officer Catherine Smith were excellent facilitators. Thank you, CSP.
Angela Brett, associate member, by email

Pensions Proposals

I would like to see more Frontline coverage of the government’s current proposals affecting our pensions.


Not everyone may be aware that our pension fund provides a budgetary profit in excess of £2 million a year. As a union representing us physiotherapists, you should be making more noise against this reform. James Bradley, by email

 

Editor’s comment:

Frontline has covered, and will continue to cover, the NHS pensions issue, particularly in the coming weeks as the society considers industrial action for the first time in more than 30 years.  Members can keep up to date through Frontline, the CSP website and our weekly e-bulletin. If you’ve not already signed up for that, do so now by visiting www.csp.org.uk. You can update your email address easily through your website account but do make sure you are registered and logged in first.

Burning question

A statement on the CSP ballot paper suggests I may be in breach of contract if I take industrial action. Should I be worried?

No. The paragraph on the ballot paper relating to a potential breach of contract which may lead to dismissal is a legal requirement. Without it, the CSP would not be able to organise a lawful industrial action ballot. Providing the CSP organises the ballot correctly and in line with its obligations, you cannot legally be dismissed for taking part in industrial action in the twelve-week period from 30 November if there is a yes vote. This is known as a ‘protected period’.
If the majority of members vote yes in this ballot, the protected period will run from 30 November to 21 February 2012.  Legally, taking part in lawful industrial action will not lead to you being sacked, singled out or hindered for promotion.
Find more information see: www.csp.org.uk/pensions 

This is intended as general information only and does not replace individual advice.

Corrections and Clarifications

  • A line in Chris Worsfold’s letter about very low-speed whiplash injuries (Frontline, 5 October), was accidentally cut. The statement ‘The average female driver’s head weighs about 80lbs’ should, of course, have gone on to read ‘The average female driver’s head weighs about 80lbs within milliseconds of the rear impact.’

 

  • The photo with the feature about the CSP Members’ Benevolent Fund (‘A friend in need’, Frontline, 5 October) shows the committee of the Royal London Hospital Physiotherapy Old Students Association, who kindly raised £200 for the fund with a raffle.

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