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Thursday, 18 September 2014

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Cumbria health chiefs ‘must prove they are worth spending £1.3m on’

THE former head of public health in Cumbria has called on senior managers to prove their worth after revelations about their salaries.

The Evening Mail revealed on Wednesday the senior members of the group which controls Cumbria’s NHS budget shared a £1.3m pay pot in 2013/14.

Professor John Ashton, president of charity the UK Faculty of Public Health, said the public had a “right to expect” results in the light of money spent.

He said: “If people are going to be paid this kind of money then they are going to have to deliver a very high level of competence in shaping the NHS for the future.”

Figures in the annual accounts of NHS Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group showed that GPs were collecting large salaries for part-time managerial work, on top of what they already earn for treating patients.

The minimum agreed working patterns were three half-day sessions per week, but some GPs had extra duties for more senior positions.

The CCG says all decisions on salaries are “fair and justifiable”. A statement said: “The CCG’s remuneration committee makes recommendations for the salaries of clinical leaders and those managers on the very senior manager pay scale.

“These decisions are based on the guiding principle that any decision is fair and justifiable, based on evidence recognising the size and complexity of the CCG. The committee follows the guidance set by NHS England, the Hay Group and Tenon Technical Employment Status Guide.”

The CCG’s annual accounts also include pension benefits accumulated by each senior manager – although the group has warned that these figures do not represent payments made to individuals.

Other benefits listed included claims for lease cars of £7,900 and £5,500 from finance officer Charles Welbourn and chief officer Nigel Maguire respectively.

Mr Ashton added: “The public has a right to expect very high levels of accuracy and transparency.”

Since 2012 CCGs, led by local GPs, have controlled how money is spent on hospitals and community and mental health care services.

CCGs are divided into smaller localities, each with their own governing bodies.

The CCG in Cumbria is responsible for the county’s £1,395,743,000 NHS budget for the next two years.

Have your say

Pay me half a million and I will demolish Furness a General and start again.

Posted by King of Cumbria on 16 August 2014 at 09:36

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