Pay deal a hugely positive development

16 March 2023

Responding to news that a pay deal has been reached in principle between the government and unions representing Agenda for Change staff, the chief executive of NHS Providers, Sir Julian Hartley said:

"This is a hugely positive development after months of strike action, which has seen NHS staff out on picket lines and widespread disruption to patient care with tens of thousands of appointments postponed.

"But we must remember that this isn't a done deal yet. Unions will need to put this deal to their members who will have the final say on whether or not it is accepted.

"We are very encouraged by the guarantee from the government that there will be no impact on frontline services or the quality of care that patients receive as a result of this offer. We take this to mean that the deal is fully funded rather than relying on raids on NHS budgets, taking money away from key services. This is crucial to the success of the deal.

"It is also good to see that as a result of this deal all staff will be lifted above the real living wage, something we have long called for.

"We now need to see today's progress matched by urgent movement on talks between the government and unions representing junior doctors. As trust leaders assess the full extent of the disruption caused by this week's 72-hour walkout, their message is loud and clear: redouble your efforts to find a way through. No more strikes."