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Well announces COVID-19 ‘recognition payment’ to thank staff

Well praised staff for how they have “continued to serve their communities" during the pandemic
Well praised staff for how they have “continued to serve their communities" during the pandemic

Well Pharmacy will award a payment to around 6,000 of its employees in recognition of their hard work during the COVID-19 pandemic, the multiple has said.

The “recognition payment” is a way for Well to show its appreciation for its employees’ “remarkable” response to the COVID-19 outbreak, Well CEO Seb Hobbs said in a video released on YouTube earlier this week (May 12).

Praising Well’s “frontline heroes”, Mr Hobbs highlighted staff’s “courage, compassion and commitment to each other, to the Well brand and to our patients and customers”.

The multiple announced that the payment will be made to staff in one of two ways - either a £150 flat payment or “10% extra” on the average hours worked over four weeks.

A spokesperson for Well told C+D yesterday (May 14) that staff members including pharmacists, pre-registration pharmacists, store managers, home delivery service driver team managers, and other frontline managers will receive the £150 payment, as they are salaried employees.

The 10% payment will go to pharmacy technicians, assistants, trainees, and delivery drivers, as well as warehouse operatives at Well’s Healthcare Service Centre in Stoke-on-Trent, and staff working in the company’s digital pharmacy, the spokesperson said.

“Express pride”

The YouTube video also included a message from Well people director Jacqueline Lunardi. Ms Lunardi said the 10% payment will be calculated by looking at hours worked by staff across March, April and May.

She explained that Well is looking at all three months, rather than one, because  it is “mindful that if somebody had to self-isolate due to COVID-19 symptoms for seven or 14 days and we chose the particular month that colleague was off, then they could be penalised.”

She added that staff must have been employed by May 1 and must still work for the company on July 2, which is when the payment will be paid, to qualify for it.

The payment, which is subject to tax and national insurance contributions, applies to Well employees across all four UK nations.

The spokesperson said the COVID-19 bonus was possible because of support from the company’s owner, Bestway, which “wanted to express their pride in how teams across Well have supported communities across the UK” during the pandemic.

“Our frontline teams have continued to serve their communities and support our most vulnerable patients throughout this period of uncertainty. I, along with everyone at Well and the Bestway Group, are proud of their commitment, compassion, and courage, and we’re pleased to be able to recognise their dedication in this way,” Mr Hobbs said.  

12 Comments
Question: 
Have you received a COVID-19 related bonus?

Lucky Ex-Locum, Superintendent Pharmacist

Tesco are giving all their staff a 10% bonus on their hours worked as a thankyou, for the duration of the lockdown plus extra discount. Looking at this it implies the Well payment is £150 max. And what about the dispensers and particularly counter staff who are the ones taking the greatest risk? They have families to feed as well whilst earning a pittance.

Pauline Wells, Dispenser Manager/ Dispensing Assistant

Nice to be appreciated, hopefully other multiples will take note. 

Daneil Kumar, Locum pharmacist

Well done .  Not like some other who reduced pharmacy openning hours despite increased workload. Staff have to make the hours by coming to work on their usual day off. Manager says it is the head office decision.

Benie I, Locum pharmacist

No comment. 

Lucky Ex-Locum, Superintendent Pharmacist

I had a little bit of sick come up when I read this article.....

Locum Pharmacist, Locum pharmacist

Exactly

geoffrey gardener, Community pharmacist

Wow, works out at about £7.50 per day, shame they cant go out and paint the town red.

Axed Locum, Locum pharmacist

And lefover crumbs for the locums!!

Lucky Ex-Locum, Superintendent Pharmacist

No, mate, the locum crumbs are what are being swept up to give to the management.

N O, Pharmaceutical Adviser

Going by your view and extrapolating it to the entire 365 days it works out to 41p a day. Does this mean this is bad?? No.

£150 is a lot of money they can spend on something important.

Always look at the bright side.

Lucky Ex-Locum, Superintendent Pharmacist

It'd pay for the funeral flowers I suppose.......

On Break, Community pharmacist

Well done! :-)

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