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UK - NHS England cap on agency payments comes into effect

23 November 2015

A controversial cap on spending on NHS agency staff comes into effect in England today in a bid to save over £1.3 billion over the next three years.

By April 2016, NHS trusts will not be able to pay agency staff, such as doctors and nurses, more than 55% more for a shift than a permanent member of staff.

Earlier this year, it was reported that health secretary Jeremy Hunt ordered a clampdown on the use of agency staff by the NHS. According to the BBC   he said for too long staffing agencies have been able to "rip off the NHS by charging extortionate hourly rates".

The staffing industry has responded vigorously to these claims and, last week, the REC claimed  that patient safety was being put at risk.

With the new cap, there will be a limit on the amount companies can charge per shift for providing all staff, including doctors and non-clinical personnel.

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