Press Release Press Release Press Release

17 October, 2000

THIRD OF HEALTH VISITORS SUFFER CAR DAMAGE

More than a third of health visitors have had their car either damaged in accidents or vandalised while visiting clients, a survey by the Community Practitioners' and Health Visitors' Association revealed today, (Tuesday, 17 October).

The survey of 500 health visitors across the UK showed that 39% had had their car damaged while on NHS business in the last 12 months.

The CPHVA's Head of Labour Relations, Roger Kline said: "This alarming fact shows the urgency in reaching a fair and comprehensive settlement as part of our Deals on Wheels campaign, so that health visitors and community nurses aren't out of pocket when they use their cars."

"The revelation that their cars are being targeted, in certain cases, by vandals just highlights the daily pressures that health visitors are under as they deliver vital services to the community. It is time that justice was done."

The survey disclosed that health visitors were spending on average £1,350 a year on their lease cars and 58% felt their deal was "poor/very poor". Only 2% felt that that had a "very good" arrangement.

The main complaints about the lease car deals were: costs too much (68%), inflexible (33%) and lack of choice (14%).

Whether health visitors owned or leased their cars, 97% used it to carry out their duties as a community nurse underlining the fact that a car is an essential tool of the trade, and not "a perk" .

Roger Kline added: "The entire package of NHS car arrangements forced through by the previous Government in 1988 is discredited. We're hoping for an early response to these concerns from the current Government."

The CPHVA and Community Psychiatric Nurses Association (CPNA) want: a 40% increase in mileage rates; free parking badges for community nurses when visiting clients; a review of lease car arrangements; and a review of taxation to end the myth having an NHS car is "a perk".

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NOTE FOR NEWS DESKS

An interim agreement on mileage rates was reached on 17 July. MSF/CPHVA has not been notified of any follow up meeting or further draft agreement, which was promised at the time.

For further information, please contact

Shaun Noble, Press Officer

Tel:

(020) 7939 7043

0468 69 39 40 (mobile)

Roger Kline

Tel:

0468 69 39 34 (mobile)

Colin Adkins

Tel:

(020) 7939 7095

CPHVA press releases can be seen on the CPHVA web site: www.msfcphva.org

The CPHVA is an autonomous professional section of the Manufacturing, Science and Finance union. The CPHVA represents 18,000 health visitors, school nurses, practice nurses and registered nurses working in the community in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.


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