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03 February 1998

NHS chiefs: high pay, poor performance
Thirteen NHS trust chief executives received six-figure salaries last year despite failing to meet their financial targets, according to investigations by Labour Research magazine.

Labour Research examined trust annual reports and figures collated by the Fitzhugh Directory to gain a picture of top pay in the NHS. It found that, while NHS staff and patients are repeatedly told the service is in financial crisis, it is a different story for chief executives.

While their mid-range remuneration, including pension contributions, for the year to March 1997 was ?73,000, 32 of them earned over ?100,000 (names listed in Labour Research).

Most of the 32 top earners saw pay rises in the year, 18 of them getting increases ahead of both inflation and average trust wage settlements. These include 13 chief executives of trusts that failed to break even over the year, the key financial target set by the Conservative government. Eleven of these also failed on a second financial target - to make a 6% return on assets.

The poorest performance came from South Manchester University Hospitals trust, which had both a deficit and a negative return on assets. Nevertheless, its chief executive Mike Brown received a total pay, pension and benefits package of ?103,000.

The other 10 failing on two targets were:
* Epsom Health Care with a ?1.5 million deficit but which paid its chief executive Dr Tudor Thomas ?118,000;
* Royal Hospitals, which made a loss of ?4 million but paid its former chief executive Gerry Green ?102,000 for 11 months' work before he left in February 1997;
* United Leeds Teaching Hospital, which was ?10 million in the red in 1996-97 but paid Stuart Ingham ?104,000;
* Wellhouse, which increased losses over the past two final years to ?4.2 million while paying chief executive Nigel Beverley a total of ?106,000;
* Brighton Health Care, which posted a ?2.6 million loss but paid Stuart Welling ?106,000;
* Royal Liverpool University Hospitals, which slipped to a ?3.8 million deficit while it paid its chief executive Keith Parsons a total of ?108,000;
* West Cheshire, whose losses, before merging with Wirral Community Healthcare trust, were ?114,000 but it still paid its former chief executive Salle Dare ?284,000 in total including ?231,000 in pension contributions;
* Bromley, which reported a ?224,000 deficit but paid Mark Rees a total of ?111,000;
* Addenbrookes, which slipped into the red to the tune of ?341,000 while giving chief executive John Ashbourne a ?105,000 pay and pensions package; and
* Heatherwood & Wexham Park, which had a ?2.5 million deficit before technical adjustments and paid Frank Collins a total of ?101,000.

Notes to editors

Further details of the survey are published in the February 1998 issue of Labour Research. The price of a single copy is ?2.75 including postage.
The Labour Research Department is an independent trade union and labour movement organisation founded 86 years ago. More than 2,000 trade union organisations, including 54 national unions, representing 99% of total TUC membership are affiliated.
For more details contact Clare Ruhemann on 0171 902 9825.

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