"A 2% cut in manpower" - Bow Group Calls for Clarity on Labour's Bank Holiday Plans for the NHS

Friday, June 2, 2017
Dr Jon Stanley

The Bow Group's Health Research Fellow Dr Jon Stanley has written to NHS Chief Executive Simon Stevens calling for urgent clarity over the impact of Labour's bank holiday proposals which we project will result in a 2% cut to NHS manpower.


Dear Chief Executive,

The Bow Group intervened in last year's junior doctor contract dispute given our concerns over loss of patient care.

The potential impact of four less working days a year in the NHS would be substantial. There is a proposal by one major political party to have an extra four Bank Holidays a year.

We believe this would mean:

• A cut in hours that GP surgeries open
• Less doctors in hospital, equivalent to a loss of several thousand Whole Time Equivalent doctors.
• Fewer elective surgery slots leading to longer waiting lists.
• Delays in cancer diagnosis and treatment
• Productivity losses of several billion pounds
• Cuts to final salary pensions as salaries would either be cut or contributions rise to protect pensions

This is not an exhaustive list. What plans have been made by NHS England in the event of this policy being introduced by the end of the next parliament. Have any Sustainability and Transformative Partnerships modelled this policy proposal?

The Bow Group is publishing this request as an open letter to bring clarity to the current debate.

Yours aye

Mr. Jonathan Stanley MBChB MRCS
Health Research Fellow
Bow Group