No Covid cash bonus for hospital staff – despite £100 for Sheffield workers

NHS Staff working at Barnsley and Rotherham hospitals will not receive a cash bonus as a thank you for working through the covid-19 pandemic – despite Sheffield NHS trust giving out a one-off £100 payment to staff.

By Danielle Andrews, Local Democracy Reporter
Wednesday, 7th April 2021, 1:13 pm

Kirsten Major, chief executive of Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust which runs the Royal Hallamshire, Northern General and Weston Park hospitals as well as the Jessop maternity wing and Charles Clifford dental facility, announced a one-off £100 payment for every worker in their March wages.

However, Barnsley and Rotherham hospitals did not follow suit, instead allowing staff an extra days’ holiday.

A spokesperson for Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust said: “Barnsley Hospital has been offering extra and ongoing support, rewards and recognition for staff throughout the last year.

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“Staff recognition has always been important to us and we have a number of internal activities and schemes – such as our regular Brilliant Awards – specially designed to acknowledge the work of our staff.

“In the past year, the hospital has given staff an extra day’s annual leave and the hospital charity has worked tirelessly to distribute treats and most recently, thank you bags along with gifts through a ‘random acts of kindness’ scheme to all staff within the Trust.

“We have in development a new staff garden and wellbeing area and we also offer a robust health and wellbeing programme as well as psychological support packages.

Dr Richard Jenkins, Barnsley Hospital chief executive said: “Since we admitted our very first Covid positive patient over a year ago, the challenges we have overcome and the things we have achieved together as a hospital is nothing short of incredible. We have been overwhelmed by the generous support of both local and national businesses and local people who have donated gifts in kind which have also helped boost staff morale and supported their wellbeing.

I have thanked our staff throughout the year, and I say again, thank you to each and every one of them for their hard work, commitment and enormous efforts throughout the pandemic.”

Dr Richard Jenkins, chief executive of The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust said: “In recognition of the hard work and dedication of our colleagues throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, we have given all our staff an additional day of annual leave and a ‘thank you’ bag.

“We have listened to feedback from staff and we are excited to develop a new health and wellbeing garden for staff, as well as a woodland walk on the Rotherham Hospital site which will provide colleagues with a calm space to relax. Through the Rotherham Hospital and Community Charity, we have also been providing spontaneous treats, such as our 28 Days of Kindness initiative in February.

“The past year has been challenging for everyone, and the health and wellbeing of our staff is of great importance to us. We are investing in a programme of psychological support to help our staff who have been incredible through these difficult times.”

Sheffield’s bonus scheme came following controversy over the Government’s proposed one per cent pay rise for NHS staff in England.

Trade unions wrote to Chancellor Rishi Sunak saying the offer ‘fails the test of honesty and fails to provide staff who have been on the very frontline of the pandemic the fair pay deal they need’.