BOSSES at Liverpool’s Royal hospital are being urged to rethink plans to shed up to 600 jobs.
Around 10% of the hospital’s workforce could be at risk over five years under proposals revealed this week, though officials said that was the “worst-case scenario”.
Yesterday, Unison regional organiser Paul Summers told the Post the union was concerned that plans to use the controversial Private Finance Initiative (PFI) as part of efforts to rebuild the Royal were a factor behind the move.
He said: “The hospital trust have said this is not connected to PFI and is down to wider cuts in the NHS, but I deal with trusts across Merseyside and nobody is looking at job losses on this scale, so I do not accept that claim.
“We are concerned there will be cuts to services and that the taxpayer will have to cover costs associated with the PFI project in future.” Under PFI, public projects are funded through injections of cash from private companies who then receive payments, with interest, from the taxpayer over several years.
Mr Summers said: “In the past, management and politicians have told us they don’t like PFI, but it is the only show in town in terms of getting things done.
“But that is not the case any more. There are alternatives being used, for example in Hartlepool where they used loans taken from pension funds because that was cheaper than PFI.