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Fifteen NHS trusts will pilot a flexible working app which allows doctors, nurses and midwives to book themselves onto available shifts to earn additional pay.
The aim for the new flexible working app is to reduce the NHS’ reliance on agency staff and help the NHS respond better to increased demand. Payment for extra hours could be available within 24 hours.
Health minister Stephen Barclay said: “A modern NHS needs modern ways of working – and that means using the latest technology to give our dedicated staff more of a choice over how, when and where they want to work.
“We want to make sure they have the right work-life balance if they work extra shifts.
“This innovative trial is a win-win for everyone – it helps staff provide more consistent care for patients and gives them the flexibility they want in choosing their working patterns.
“It will also help the NHS reduce its reliance on expensive agency staff.”
More than 100,000 healthcare professionals are estimated to be signed up to ‘banks’, which allows them to work additional shifts. The app will mean NHS workers can receive messages on their phones about available shifts and sign up instantly. If the pilots are successful they will be rolled out nationally.
Those who work extra shifts will be offered the option of being paid weekly and some trusts will allow staff to opt-out of pension arrangements so they can be paid more for additional work.