'Job cuts at Scunthorpe General Hospital will have impact on patients'
UNION bosses are considering action after health chiefs said they were considering compulsory redundancies at Scunthorpe General Hospital.
Jim Bell, regional organiser for Unison, said compulsory redundancies would not be accepted by his organisation.
"We understand various trusts are in a difficult position and will co-operate with them by voluntary redundancy means," he said.
"But if they move to compulsory redundancies, Unison has a policy of no compulsory job losses and if any of our members are targeted, we will go back to the workforce with a view to asking for a mandate for action. The employers need to be very careful and we are keeping a close eye on the situation."
Reaction across the health service in North Lincolnshire has revealed there is widespread concern about the impact any changes could have on patients.
Dr Ajay Vora, a GP based at Barnetby Medical Centre, said any further compulsory redundancies would have an impact on patient care.
He said: "Losing these jobs would have an impact because the jobs would go and not be replaced.
"Patients will see a difference if any member of staff is lost, including non-medical staff.
"There is room for improvement in hospitals, with some problems that need to be addressed. I can see why cuts need to be made, as there is a budget to adhere, to but I am worried about the future."
Jean Bromby, chairwoman of North Lincolnshire Council's health scrutiny panel, said: "We know we have to save money and provide a great service as well.
"We are seeking assurances from trust members that, if they happen, any staff cuts are appropriate for patient care."
Nic Dakin, MP for Scunthorpe, said: "This is a real concern for local people.
"It is important that Scunthorpe General Hospital provides the highest quality care to local people."
A Department of Health spokesman said: "We are increasing funding for the NHS by £12.5 billion until 2015. Hospitals should be looking at ways to be more efficient, but that doesn't mean lowering the quality of care."
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