HEALTH bosses have defended their original decision to ask for a 20% reduction in care workers’ pay during lockdown.

The Dudley Clinical Commissioning Group say they were following the government guidelines at the time.

The plan was to reduce the salaries of Personal Assistants who visit some of Dudley’s most vulnerable patients at their homes but could not during lockdown because of the health risks.

Because the care workers are paid by the families, using public money, the CCG were asking the families to recoup the money from the care workers.

But it was an unpopular move among the families,who took up the case and asked for a review.

They were particularly upset that the decision involved retrospectively asking their Pas to pay 13 weeks of money back.

Now the CCG has confirmed that the idea has been dropped and withheld money will be repaid.

They say the original decision involved the CCG agreeing to pay 80% of the salaries of the Personal Assistants – to ensure families could retain them during the period they were shielding.

Neill Bucktin, Managing Director for Dudley said, “Dudley CCG understands that this was a worrying time for those affected, however the decision to withhold payments originally was in line with national guidance.

“We are pleased to confirm that this decision has now been reviewed and it was agreed that withheld monies will be repaid.

“Those families affected have been advised of this outcome.”