Farron raises concerns about pressure on local health staff
South Lakeland MP Tim Farron has raised concerns about the pressure on local NHS staff, as the latest figures show that local health services lose more time to sickness absence than other areas.
NHS data released this week shows that sickness absence rates are higher than average in the area. Nationally, the sickness absence rate in the NHS for the last year has been 4.15%. However, local NHS services have experienced a higher average rate. The rate for the University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust is 4.9%, whilst that of the Cumbria Partnership Foundation Trust is 4.57%. The rate for the North West Ambulance Service is 5.84%.
Tim said: "High sickness absence rates are often an indicator of poor staff morale and high levels of stress. Sadly, this is unsurprising given the pressure which staff are under. Resources are increasingly strained, as local NHS services have to cover a huge, sparsely-populated area. The government must look seriously at what can be done to relieve pressure on health services in rural areas like ours, to ensure that rural areas get the services they need. Our local NHS staff are excellent and need our support."