Friday, 26 December 2008

My changing times

It is a curse to live in interesting times. Strange as I am always living in interesting times. That happened just about that time I stood under a ladder and kicked those 13 black (sorry "Rainbow") cats while smashing mirrors.

So, the country is going to the dogs, a cereal has got the nation addicted* and all of a sudden people are worried about owing money. Seems now that while it was fashionable in 2003 to be arse uppers in debt, being skint is the new rich (or some other such twaddle that those media obsessed tossers who have been the ones both casing and being affected by the current climate can use). Well, I have been a busy bunny, and occasionally sort of working as a staff Nurse. I have realised one thing recently with the money I get paid. When I was on the Acute medical ward, I would be expected to work Mon-Sun, on either days or nights. There are 6 types of pay I could get:
1) Basic salary, taken during Monday to Friday, during office hours. This is my basic £20224 salary.
2) Night duty enhancement. Any night shift, which used to be 19:15-07:45
3) Saturday enhancement- Basically 1.25 times the wage for during the week
4) Sunday enhancement- 1.75 times normal wage for working on a Sunday
5) Bank holiday enhancement- Paid for working public holidays
6) Overtime enhancement- 1.5 times wage for working any shift not on my usual off duty.

When I went to Cath Labs, I knew that there would be a pay cut. This was because I was only getting payment 1. No nights, bank holidays, Saturday, Sunday etc. I make up some money by working on my old acute ward, and at a local primary care hospital on their rehabilitation ward as a bank Nurse. I realised something the other month. I was getting paid just as much for doing 2 Sunday overtime shifts (that's 23 hours) as I was for a full months worth of enhancements (which would be somewhere about half of my time at work). I have checked, and between May and December, I have paid £970 in National insurance, and £1778 in tax, making £2748 paid in tax, for earning to date £12742. So, that's roughly £3000 to the government, and £10000 for me, or just under a third to the taxman who gets money FROM me for doing f**k all TO me. Greedy b******ds! So, I can get just a much for 2 shifts as an entire month. No wonder productivity is down.

Well, I have had a sort of alright Christmas. My Nan passed away very suddenly in the hospital where I work at the beginning of the month, which has put a dampener on the season.

At work though, thinks have been looking up. I have been forging ahead after getting bogged down with some of the angioplasty work, and have made good inroads with my Pacemaker and ICD scrub procedures. We had the local news in a few weeks back with their cameras. The camera man put a camera down on my Charge nurses sterile angioplasty trolley and got a terse "What are you doing!" yelled his way from him (funny how they edited that bit out though). Thankfully I was next door in pacing with my hat a mask on. Don't want the high-ups recognising me. Specking of the high ups though, the health care commission visited the division last month (did not see them in the labs though). One of the consultants for a joke walked in with a large alcohol dispenser in his scrubs, and walked around dispensing gel into his hands in quick succession saying "The healthcare commission are coming, the health care commission are comming, clean hands, clean hands, the healthcare commission are comming". His "More hot towels" joke about the latest project for the labs I found very amusing. Especially when in a procedure he said "More Vycryl...more hot towels, more hot towels".

Life may be the sh*ts but there is still some (bad) humour.

*Erratum. It has come to my attention that the "Credit Crunch" is in fact a term relating to the financial screw up, and not a novelty cereal. I would like to thank the lawyers from Kellogg's for pointing this out.


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