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Health Care Support Workers (HCSW) – HCA Band 2 Campaign.

Updated 2nd March – HCA Band 2 Members.

In December 2023 the GMB Union communicated to HCSW (HCA) members information about the Joint Trade Union dispute. Approximately 1/3 of our HCA members responded to initial questionnaire and following that initial survey response the GMB Union hosted two information days at Derriford Hospital early in January 2024.*

* If you opted out of being contacted by text, SMS or email when you joined the GMB Union you will not receive any specific or general communications via electronic means.


If you would like us to send you electronic updates and news? please change your contact preferences, continue monitor this website or contact your local GMB Union Rep.


On Friday 1st March, GMB Union members attended the University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust Board meeting to voice Joint Trade Unions displeasure and frustration at UHPT rejection of the Joint Trade Union demands to pay HCA Band 2 members what they deserve. Band 3 pay! – with backpay!

GMB Union have organised a joint TU information stall on Tuesday 5th March and Friday 8th March at Derriford Hospital level 6 (outside Warrens). Time 9am – 2pm.

The purpose of these coming information days is to help us to communicate and update HCAs as to the Joint Trade Union position regarding our ongoing dispute with Derriford Hospital. If you are unable to drop by on the day please contact your Trade Union directly for face to face meetings.

This local campaign / dispute is a joint campaign supported by all recognised Trade Unions.

The employers position has not changed and Joint Trade Unions have lodged an appeal. This will be heard in March 2024.

The recognised Trade Unions may have communicated to their members at different times and in different ways over the past couple of months and these information days will give us the opportunity to present our JOINT Trade Union position and discuss your views, opinions, objectives and options for any future ongoing campaign.


HCA Band 2 would undertake personal care such as feeding, bathing, toileting, recording fluids balance and nutrition.
HCA Band 3 would undertake Monitoring of heart rate and blood pressure, bloods, wound observations during analysis.

Information Link 1

Information Link 2

Trade Unions have requested full documented evidence of the review of Health Care Support Workers roles. There will be very few who have not undertaken the Care Certificate or additional clinical observations/skills training. This will be evidenced either digitally on ESR or as a paper copy in their personal file held by their department/ward manager.

  • These are not just blood pressure, pulse and temperature but must include skills such as venepuncture, visual acuity, neurological observations, blood glucose monitoring, pregnancy testing, routine maternal and neonatal observations, observing patients for signs of agitation or distress, wound observations and simple wound dressings, removal of peripheral cannula, urinalysis, removal of catheter.
  • Trade Unions do not believe that within the HCSW workforce at UHP that there will many, if any, that do not undertake some clinical observation and therefore recommend that your previous data is stringently reviewed before sending any communication to HCSW about their position being upgraded to a band 3 or remaining at a band 2. The influx of appeals would be large and may well cause distress and animosity within their teams which in turn may cause patient care to suffer.
  • Guidance was provided to UHPT by NHS Employers in August 2021 clarifying key differences between HCA Band 2 and Band 3 job profiles. This guidance lists different initiatives and programmes of work that have impacted on the roles of the HCSW CSW-employer-guidance.pdf ( UHP had not to our knowledge, actioned this guidance or any workstreams to commence the work until at the earliest September 2022.
  • Trade Unions have not been given any indication as to what incremental point colleagues will be uplifted to on B3 especially the approximate 490 who have been identified as having over 2 years service. NHS Staff Council agreed some helpful guidance on the interaction between promotion and unsocial hours Pay on Promotion Scenarios & FAQs | NHS Employers Section 1.18.
  • Trade Unions require the back pay to be consolidated back pay to include enhancements and pension contributions from 2019.
  • Revised Job Descriptions for the HCA B2 and B3 were eventually completed in January 2024. Job Evaluation Trained Trade Union Reps played an active part in the matching  process.

To ensure that you receive regular updates, please keep the GMB Union updated with your personal and work details.

* If you opted out of text, SMS, email communication when you joined the GMB Union you will not receive general communication by these electronic means. Please change your preference if you would like us to send you electronic updates and news. If not, please monitor these pages for updates.

If you have any questions please contact;   or 

Other local GMB Reps are contactable in different areas of the hospital and they will be able to give you factual updates on the HCA Band 2 situation at UNIVERSITY HOSPITALS PLYMOUTH NHS TRUST (Derriford).