The Department remains focussed on finding a way forward – in this context we are currently finalising a formal pay offer for 2019/20.
This will be the best offer possible within the budget available, but the reality is that our ability to address pay issues is inevitably constrained at a time of intense budgetary pressures for health and social care services. These budgetary pressures are clear for all to see, and we have been highlighting these for some considerable time.
Despite claims to the contrary, there is no separate or untapped source of funding that we can access – nor can money simply be found in the budget. As with any other item of expenditure, pay costs come out of the one health budget, which is currently overcommitted. Every pound spent on one priority area is a pound not available for another.
Notes to editors:
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