What is an NHS Staff Bank?
Firstly it has nothing to do with the Banking industry where you keep your money. An NHS staff bank is an entity managed by a trust, or through a third party organisation who contracts with healthcare professionals to take on shifts at trust hospitals. The Francis Report of 2013, which drew a focus on patient safety, quality of care and a culture of collective leadership, provided recommendations on the level of nursing staff that is required per patient on all wards across the country. In order to meet these standards, NHS Trusts rely on temporary workers to meet the fluctuating staffing needs caused by staff illness, or increased patient demand. Thanks to this high level of demand across the country for healthcare professionals, staff banks regularly have shifts available for their bank staff.
The demand for bank staff offers a lot of benefits which are not necessarily available to substantive workers or even non-bank agency workers. Firstly bank staff are able to choose what shift they want to take on, giving them a great deal of flexibility when deciding to work days over nights, or weekdays over weekends. Many substantive workers also choose to work on the bank to either their own trust or another NHS trust. This gives them some variety in where they work, but also provides them a chance to earn more doing the work they love.
In terms of career progression, staff banks give workers a chance not only to gain NHS experience, but also to work in a specialism they are looking to develop. Working in a NHS staff bank can often lead to lines of work which are longer term contracts meaning when a permanent opportunity opens up, bank staff are perfectly placed to fill the role.
Staff banks are equally beneficial for the trust as it is for the worker. Staff banks are often significantly more cost effective than healthcare agencies, so giving the trust access to an army of workers who have all been reviewed and approved to work allows the trust a level of safety that they will be able to maintain safe standards of patient care in a manageable way.
Bank Partners are an outsourced managed services organisation providing staff bank services to NHS trusts. We manage staff banks in London, in Surrey and in Essex, and have hundreds of opportunities for Healthcare professionals and non-clinical workers looking to work with the NHS.