Sunak shares ‘good news’ on pay offer with NHS nurses

Rishi Sunak joined nurses in a south London hospital to tell staff the news of the breakthrough with health unions.

On a visit to St George’s Hospital in Tooting, the Prime Minister and Health Secretary Steve Barclay told nursing staff about the new pay offer, which the unions are recommending to members.

“I hope that you’ve heard the good news,” Mr Sunak told nurses on a thoracic ward.

Rishi Sunak speaks with staff during a visit to St George’s hospital in London
Rishi Sunak, left, spoke with staff during a visit to St George’s hospital in London (Toby Melville/PA)

“We’ve been working really hard at it, but we’ve managed to find a great agreement with the Royal College of Nursing and all the other unions to make sure you guys all get recognised and rewarded for the fantastic job you do for us.

“And do that in a way that works for us as well and is affordable, so we’re really pleased.”

Mr Sunak was introduced to nurses on the ward, before sitting down for a cup of tea with staff.

Union members will now vote on whether to accept the deal, but the Prime Minister appeared in a good mood as he enthused to staff that he was delivering “hot off the press information”.

Industrial strike
The Prime Minister said he was ‘really pleased’ with the agreement (Toby Melville/PA)

Surrounded by nurses in a room just off the ward, Mr Sunak – sleeves rolled up and holding a cup of tea – spoke about the Government’s plans for the NHS.

“At the beginning of the year I made a speech about the priorities that we had and one of them was to cut NHS waiting lists,” he said.

Referencing that ambition, as well as efforts to improve urgent and emergency care, the Prime Minister said: “I know you all just want to focus on that and that is why you all became nurses and everything else so that you could just help patients.

“Now you can get back to focusing on that fully, which hopefully is really good news.”