189 staff apply for redundancy at Queen Alexandra Hospital

Queen Alexandra Hospital
Queen Alexandra Hospital
Alex Wardle, from Lee-on-the-Solent, collapsed at home and tragically died in March 2016, aged 23. 

From left: Alex's father, Stephen Wardle, sister Gemma Wardle, Alex Wardle and his mother, Denise Wardle.

Gosport family to keep Alex’s legacy alive by taking part in Great South Run

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UP TO 189 staff have come forward for voluntary redundancy at Queen Alexandra Hospital.

All hospital staff – including doctors and nurses – were invited to apply for voluntary redundancy last month.

Hospital bosses said they needed to make up to 99 job cuts to help make £30.5m worth of savings this financial year.

Staff had to apply for voluntary redundancy by the end of April, and 189 have submitted applications.

But not all will be approved as bosses will have to look at each individual post and see which ones they can lose without putting patient care and safety at risk.

Speaking at a board meeting, Ursula Ward, the chief executive of Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, said: ‘We’ve got a very robust process in place. We will risk-assess each post. Trade unions are involved.’

But the hospital trust anticipates not being able to accept all of the voluntary redundancy applications.

Ms Ward added: ‘If we do not get enough voluntary redundancies, which I think is likely to be the case, we will have to make compulsory redundancies.’

Unions and staff representatives said they hope most of the 99 posts will be filled by voluntary redundancies.

Pat Darvill, who is the staff representative at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust and a union rep for midwives, said: ‘Obviously we do not want any staff to be made redundant, but we are aware of the severe financial difficulty and the need the make savings.

‘Voluntary redundancies will be much better than compulsory.

‘If people volunteer then they obviously really want to go and that’s their decision. It seems fairer than someone being forced to leave when they don’t want to.

‘We hope most of the job cuts will be voluntary redundancies.’

The hospital board also discussed the savings plan for last year and this year. In the last financial year the hospital had to shave £37m off its budget and found £31m worth of efficiency savings.

It was also given £6m from NHS South Central to help it break even.

Ms Ward said last year’s efforts have left her confident this year’s savings will be achieved.