How much do NHS nurses, doctors and staff get paid? 

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The pay for nurses and doctors has been a controversial topic amidst the NHS strikes in 2023. 

Many workers and NHS supporters believe the pay is not enough, with industrial action taking place as a result. 

After the various walk outs over the year, health unions have approved the government’s offer of a pay rise. 

The controversial deal has seen a 5% increase and a one-off sum of £1,655 for staff including nurses, doctors and porters. 

But how much do NHS staff currently make? 

Nurse strikes (pictured above)could continue according to Royal College of Nursing despite NHS staff accepting government offer

Nurse strikes (pictured above)could continue according to Royal College of Nursing despite NHS staff accepting government offer 

How much do NHS nurses make?

NHS pay operates on a band system which was introduced in 2004. 

According to the Royal College of Nursing in 2021 the average pay for an NHS nurse was £33,384. 

Nurses fall into each category based on experience, each band’s pay is different and nurses can climb their way up the ladder.

Newly qualified registered nurses in England will start at Band 5, receiving a starting salary of £27,055 and just over £30,000 in outer London.

Nurses will receive pay rises within their band with enough years experience, Band 5 nurses can receive up to £34,581.

Band 6 salaries range from £33,706 to £40,588 and those in Band 7 can earn up to £47,652.

For nurses with Band 8 and 9 experience, the pay becomes much more complex with different pay progression points. 

The NHS pay calculator allows nurses to understand what pay they will receive. 

Meanwhile, student nurses do not currently get paid for the hours completed on placement, which has been an ongoing debate for years.

Average pay for NHS doctors 

A doctor’s pay can vary depending on their job title, experience, hours worked and which trust they work for. 

Junior doctors will train from ten years with the average salary being around £50,000 per year.

Junior doctor pay has received criticism from the public and health unions for not being enough, they are among the NHS who taken part in walk-out strikes

Junior doctor pay has received criticism from the public and health unions for not being enough, they are among the NHS who taken part in walk-out strikes

Junior doctors in their first and second years of training will receive between £29,384 to £34,012.

For doctors starting their specialist training the salary ranges from £40,257 to £53.398.

The salary for specialist doctors ranges from £50,000-£91,584 depending on specialist grades.

GP pay varies on contracts, pay will vary for independent contractors running their own practice. Salaried GPs employed by independent contractors or directly through organisations will receive from £65,070 to £98,194.

As a competitive practice, consultants receive the most with a basic salary of £88,364 to £199,133 per year.

Meanwhile private doctors however can earn over £100,000.

How much do NHS staff get paid?

The NHS in England employs 1.5 million people, with employee costs counting for approximately two-thirds of provided expenses. 

There are various other NHS jobs that don’t require medical training, with over 350 roles to choose from according to the NHS website. 

The average pay ranges from £21,19 per year for Team Member to £76,387 for Head of Finance. 

The average pay is just over the national living wage at £01.37.  



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