Newcross Healthcare, one of the UK’s largest providers of agency healthcare workers, has been accused because of “profiteering” following a newspaper investigation.
The Guardian investigation found that the organisation had attempted to charge care homes up to £2,700 for an agency worker’s single shift during the Christmas period.
Labour MP Barbara Keeley, the shadow minister for social care, said: “It is symptomatic of the broken social care system caused by Tory austerity measures that companies like Newcross Healthcare can effectively fleece the taxpayer for thousands of pounds just for a single shift.
“This cynical company puts a high price on the work of their staff but values them far less, fining them for calling in sick and eroding their terms and conditions.”
A previous investigation by The Guardian found it was fining workers £50 for calling in sick (see Agency care worker provider fines people for calling in sick).
The new investigation revealed Newcross tripled its normal Sunday day rates to supply staff cover on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
According to a price list obtained by The Guardian this would mean the cost for a head of care for a 12-hour shift amounting to £2,766. A fee for the supply of a nurse on the same basis amounted to £2,128.
CHP has contacted Newcross Healthcare for comment.