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22
May

Jobseekers to care for patients


An NHS Trust has announced that unpaid jobseekers are to deliver patient care at three hospitals in the Midlands.

An NHS Trust has announced that unpaid jobseekers are to deliver patient care at three hospitals in the Midlands.

The announcement, which was also carried in reports from several daily publications – which include The Guadrian, Daily Mail and Telegraph – follows a pilot project at Sandwell Hospital, West Bromwich, where unemployed people worked for eight weeks, assisting with patient care on wards.

A spokesman for the Trust said that consultation with trade unions and managers had resulted in similar programmes being rolled out across out three hospitals.

While unions have been supportive of the plans, they have voiced concerns that because the Birmingham and Sandwell hospital Trust has to save £125m over the next fiveyears, it will resort to tactics of delivering “healthcare on the cheap, by using people on work experience to help with patient care”.

However, Pauline Jones, Account Manager at Jobcentre Plus, told the Daily Mail that two of the six people who took part in the pilot project had already gained employment because of their work experience.

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