Exhausted NHS staff deserve better than this | Letters

NHS bosses must show they care for their staff to avert an even worse recruitment crisis, warns Christine Hancock. A decent pay rise would help, argues Elaine Yeo. Plus letters from Karen Jacob and Celia Burney

Those of us who have been concerned for some time about the way the mental health and wellbeing of NHS staff has been seriously neglected will have appreciated Mariam Alexander’s reminder that it’s the system not the individual that’s so often to blame. (Yes, NHS staff are exhausted. But is ‘burnout’ the whole picture?, 1 March).

“Burnout” is a catch-all word that suggests that it’s your fault because you are not coping. The pandemic has put unprecedented pressures on clinical staff, but the problems predate that. In 2009, the Boorman report said that all NHS managers should be developed to recognise the link between staff health and wellbeing and the performance of an organisation, and should be judged on what they contribute to staff wellbeing. Nothing much happened. Only now are parts of the NHS seriously addressing these issues.

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Category: Mental Health