EDP: Revealed: The six figure payouts for staff leaving the Norfolk and Suffolk mental health trust

David Powles of the Eastern Daily Press and Andrew Hirst of the East Anglian Daily Times report:

Two consultants involved in a “strategic reorganisation” which saw hundreds of jobs axed at the region’s mental health trust, each received payouts worth more than £200,000.

Day five of our five-part series into public sector pay can reveal that the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) spent a total of £20.5m on exit packages between 2011 and 2015, the latest figures available. Some 46 of these payouts cost six-figure sums, including five valued at more than £200,000.

The Campaign to Save Mental Health Services in Norfolk and Suffolk described the scale of the payments as “shocking”.

“We’ve seen too much reward for failure at the top of NSFT,” a spokesman for the campaign said.

“Meanwhile, those who rely on mental health services and front line staff pay the price of underfunding and millions wasted on making staff redundant despite hundreds of vacancies.”

The reorganisation, which came about in 2012 when it was announced the NSFT had to make savings of around £40m from its £220m annual budget over a four year period, has been criticised for the loss of experienced staff. Median staff pay reduced from £26,557 to £22,517 during this period.

However, senior NSFT staff saw their six-figure salaries increase. Former chief executive Aidan Thomas earned £135-£140,000 in 2010/11, whereas the trust confirmed his successor, Michael Scott, is now paid £14,583 a month (£175,000 a year), a rise of 25pc in five years.

Figures provided by the trust show it had 52 staff on £100,000 or more in 2013/14 and 61 a year later.

Several senior staff who worked at the trust during this time have been able to amass pension pots of more than £1m. Hadrian Ball retired from his medical director’s role with a £1.4m pension pot; Mr Thomas’ pension value stood at £1m when he stood down and Mr Scott’s had reached £1.3m by 2014/15.

Mr Ball is also shown on annual reports to have received six figure payments as “other benefits” or fees. The NSFT said this was due to his “split role” of trust medical director and senior practising clinician.

Mr Scott also received “other remuneration” valued at £10,700; £8,000 of this related to a “relocation allowance”, despite the fact that Mr Scott’s previous role was with the Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS Trust, which also has its headquarters in Norwich. A further £2,700 was for leasing a car.

Two senior members of NSFT staff were shown to have worked “off-payroll” in 2014/15, despite the government advising against the practice because of tax concerns.

Click the image below to read the article in full on the EDP website.

The EADT version is available here):

EDP Revealed The six figure payouts for staff leaving the Norfolk and Suffolk mental health trust

3 thoughts on “EDP: Revealed: The six figure payouts for staff leaving the Norfolk and Suffolk mental health trust”

  1. Deeplyworriedstaffmember

    Unfortunately I work for this terrible trust and this is just the icing on the cake!!! I work for a team that was down banded in the suffolk re design (the forgotten side of the trust) and struggle daily to hold on to my registration due to tasks we are ordered to do.

    Daily staff leave not only the trust but nursing and social work due to the trauma they experienced daily.

    We now have the CQC coming again and we are being told the the staff on the ground are responsible for the trust failing and we need to be careful what we say!!!!

    We cannot whistle blow as we are threatened with our jobs and I fear daily for my registration. I now have daily anxiety before work and daily return home in tears due to the Trust not caring about service users or staff. The culture of bullying is rife !!!


  2. Let’s not forget the temporary director of finance, hired in from a management consultancy,  who was paid the equivalent of £1000 per DAY for six months….and who signed off many of the redundancy packages…..You can’t make it up.  Meanwhile, stressed out staff, are made to keep  people, who are severely ill, in the community, because there are so few beds to admit anyone to…..All they get is the understandable distress, and negative feedback from relatives and service users.

  3. I worked for the Central Cluster Crisis Resolution and Home Treatment Team when during the period described above the most experienced and qualified staff ( Band 6s ) were culled by being forced to compete with their colleagues for the few remaining posts. This is what the Trust called ” enhancing community care “. While they could afford to pay senior management fat salaries they wouldn’t shell out for a fit for purpose telephone system for a team which fielded crisis calls from patients.

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