Officials in the NHS have confirmed that around 1,200 jobs would be terminated and 186 beds will be lost due to the streamlining process following the merger of two hospitals.
It was reported that the proposed cuts, which are subject to official consultations with staff, would be made over the next 18 months. The concerned unions fear the cutbacks due to the merger of the Nottingham City Hospital and the Queen's Medical Centre could affect patient care. It is expected that consultants, nurses, clerical staff, and management would all be affected.
The hospital trust have come out accepting that this would be a rather unsettling time for staff but has assured that the changes will be made as quickly as possible.
Meanwhile 'Unison' the public sector union has expressed their fears, stating that the cuts will have an adverse effect on patients and essential services will be lost.
Ravi Subramanian, a senior regional organiser for Unison, said, "It's a sad day for the people of Nottingham. When the merger of the QMC and Nottingham City Hospital was first proposed we were very clear that we were against it. We said there was no need for it and we thought it would lead to cuts in jobs and services and, sadly, we have been proved right." He further stated, "The jobs that are being cut back are frontline jobs, jobs that are going to result in ward closures, bed losses and a reduction in services to patients," adding, "Health service users in Nottingham will suffer because of this."
Peter Homa, the Chief Executive of the trust said, "We have to think differently about how we can deliver safe services to our patients within the context of the financial challenges that all trusts now face. For example, there is a move towards delivering more services out in the community, so we will need fewer hospital beds as patients are able to access certain aspects of their healthcare nearer to home." He said, "It is important to remember that change can be a positive thing. It's a tough process and we appreciate that it has been an unsettling time for our staff because of the inevitable workforce changes."