News that the NHS has paid out more than £90 million in redundancy payments only to almost immediately rehire the same staff has been greeted with “profound dismay” by Ukip health spokesman Louise Bours.
Over 2,600 NHS staff have been laid off and then rehired in the three years from April 2012, with average payoffs topping £36,000 in some years, reports The Times.
In total these staff received £92 million in redundancy payments, the newspaper says.
It’s feared that figure may even be a conservative estimate since it does not include the cost of an additional 2,927 staff laid off and rehired before former Health Secretary Andrew Lansley’s Health and Social Care Act come into force in 2012, costing tens of millions of pounds more.
Ms Bours, MEP for the North West and a member of the Europe for Freedom and Direct Democracy group in the European Parliament, said: “What an utterly appalling waste of money.
“The Government foisted these reforms that no one wanted onto the National Health Service only to realise almost immediately that they still needed the staff they’d made redundant.
“Some people will criticise those who took the redundancy packages and then turned up back at work again a few months later, but they were only following the lead of the government.
“Imagine how many nurses that £92 million could have been spent on? Imagine how many clinical operations could have taken place?
“It almost beggars belief and I would imagine that my profound dismay over this massive amount of wasted money will be shared by many people throughout the country.
“The so-called reorganisation of the NHS has been an expensive abject failure and, as usual, the only people who end up suffering are the patients themselves.”