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Only three in five NHS staff happy with care where they work

But job satisfaction and engagement are better than last year

Louise Prime

Thursday, 28 February 2013

The latest NHS staff survey shows that barely three in five NHS staff would be happy for a friend or relative to be treated where they work, or believe that patient care is their organisation’s top priority. But levels of job satisfaction and staff engagement have improved overall since the previous survey.

The 2012 NHS Staff Survey in England, published this morning, shows that 11 measures have improved since 2011 and nine have deteriorated. Just over 101,000 people responded to the survey (representing half of those sent the questionnaire), including staff from four commissioning PCTs that chose to participate.

Only 63% of respondents agreed that if a friend or relative needed treatment they would be happy with the standard of care provided by their organisation, which is no improvement on the figure from the 2011 survey. Only 62% said they thought that their organisation’s top priority was patient care, compared with 57% in 2011.

Just over three-quarters (78%) of all NHS staff in the survey said they were satisfied with the support they receive from colleagues, and 74% with the amount of responsibility they are given (up from 71% in 2011).

Although only 40% were satisfied with how much their trust valued their work (varying from 23% of ambulance staff to 47% of social enterprise staff), and only 35% thought there was effective communication between senior managers and staff, 55% would nevertheless recommend their organisation as a place to work.

The proportion of people who had had an appraisal rose slightly from 80% in 2011 to 83% in 2012, but only 36% said that their appraisal had been well structured.

The survey also showed that bullying continues to be a significant problem in the NHS – 15% of respondents said they had experienced physical violence from patients, their relatives or other members of the public in the previous 12 months, and 30% had been bullied, harassed or abused by patients, their relatives or the public.

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