On 31 August, the French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne announced a number of measures to raise the pay of care workers, due to come into effect on 1 January 2024.
Nurses and care assistants in public hospitals and private associations will be paid 25% more for night work than for day work, and the fixed allowance paid for Sundays and public holidays will be increased by 20%.
While such measures in favour of healthcare workers are essential to make their profession more attractive, they cannot be targeted measures when, as is currently the case, they exclude one of the major sectors contributing to the provision of healthcare: the private sector.
The healthcare sector needs an ambitious plan to make the healthcare professions more attractive. To achieve this, it is vital that it recognises all the professionals, regardless of their status, who carry out the same tasks.
“Madam Prime Minister, we too have carers at night! It’s incomprehensible that care workers in private clinics and hospitals are not affected by these measures! They perform the same tasks for the same patients as their colleagues in public hospitals and, contrary to popular belief, they are already less well paid today, with DREES (Directorate for Research, Studies, Evaluation and Statistics) having just published a 9.4% pay differential between the sectors”, says Lamine Gharbi, President of the FHP (French Federation of Private Hospitals).
With a shortage of healthcare professionals affecting all sectors, unequal treatment is not conducive to mobilising everyone to serve patients. The French people cannot understand why those who care for them are treated less well depending on where they work!
Synergies between public and private establishments are essential if we are to preserve the “Covid spirit” that prevailed during the health crisis, so that we can collectively meet the health needs of our fellow citizens. What’s more, at a time when the public authorities are calling for a commitment from everyone to ensure the continuity of care.
“In order to function more effectively, our healthcare system needs to harmonise pay conditions for all healthcare professionals. Given the contribution made by the private hospital sector to the health of our citizens, and in a context that is particularly difficult due to inflation and the shortage of healthcare workers, it is vital to strengthen, rather than weaken, equity between the players: it’s a question of political coherence and the survival of our healthcare system”, concludes Lamine Gharbi.
Press release published on the FHP website on 01.09.2023