Thursday, 25 October 2012

UNISON 'appalled' at NMC fee increase

25/10/2012 from

UNISON 'appalled' at NMC fee increase

UNISON, the UK’s largest union has branded the decision of the NMC to enforce a massive 32% fee increase as unfair and disproportionate.

The union said it was deeply worried at the move, in the light of the recent £20m grant the regulator received from the government, and said there were alternatives that would mean the NMC did not have to take this step now.

The change – which is subject to Privy Council approval – will mean annual fees increasing by nearly a third from £76 to £100. The union said this would hit particularly hard given that nurses and midwives had not received any pay increase for the last two years.

UNISON head of nursing Gail Adams said:

“This is an appalling move by the NMC. There is no justice in making nurses and midwives – who have had no pay rise for two years – pay for the past financial mismanagement of the NMC.

“It beggars belief that the NMC are pushing ahead with a massive 32% increase on annual fees when they have just received £20m from the government – what message does this send to the nurses, midwives and patients whose interests they are there to protect?

“The NMC is the largest regulator in the world, and with their predictable income, should not be in the financial mess that they are in. Registrants did not cause this problem, and enforcing a fee increase that will impact on their already stretched incomes is unfair, disproportionate and untimely.

“The NMC could, and should have postponed this decision and used the time to rebuild the trust and confidence of registrants. There was nothing to stop the NMC from freezing registration fees and reviewing the situation next year; they could then use the grant to start addressing the backlog of fitness to practise cases.

“The solution is clear, and it is extremely disappointing that the NMC are ignoring it and the respondents to their consultation.”

UNISON had already said it could not support a move to increase fees following an NMC consultation earlier this year.


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