At the time of writing (April 2024) no pay offer has been made for the 2024/2025 financial year.

The Department of Health and trade unions have submitted evidence to the pay review bodies, but they are not expected to make any recommendations until at least May 2024. This means that the 2024/25 pay rise will not be paid to staff until June 2024 at the earliest.

The rest of this article covers the 2023/24 pay rise that has been implemented for most staff – often after protracted industrial action.

2023 NHS Pay Rise

After negotiation with trade unions, the Government has made an NHS staff pay offer for 2023/24 of 5%.

In addition, staff will receive two one-off bonus payments for 2022/23 worth 6% of their salary in total. The bonus payments are for:

  • 2% as a non-consolidated one-off award on top of their 2022/23 salary.
  • 4% (and a minimum of £1,250) as an ‘NHS backlog bonus.

The offer applies to all staff on Agenda for Change, including nurses, ambulance staff and physiotherapists.

The NHS Staff Council voted to accept the Government’s 23/24 pay offer. This means that all staff working on Agenda for Change received a 5% pay rise, and a one-off bonus of at least £1,655. Payment of the 2023 pay increase, including the bonus and any relevant back pay, was made with salaries in June.

Unison head of health Sara Gorton said:

“If accepted, the offer would boost pay significantly this year and mean a wage increase next year that’s more than the government had budgeted for. This is better than having to wait many more months for the NHS pay review body to make its recommendation.”

Three unions – the RCN, Unite and the Society of Radiographers initially rejected the offer and balloted for industrial action but have not subsequently taken action. Their members will still receive the pay rise and one off bonus.

The official announcement of the offer can be found on the government website.

On 17th February 2023 the Scottish government was the first administration to offer an NHS pay rise for 2023/24. They have offered a one off payment of £387 to £939 (dependent on band), plus an average salary increase of 6.5%. This comes on top of the 7.5% pay increase for 2022/23.

The DHSC in England hasn’t formally offered a pay rise yet, but on 21 February 2023 they submitted evidence to the NHS Pay Review Body and the Doctors and Dentists Review Body saying that “funding is available for pay awards up to 3.5%” in 2023. They added that rises above this would require “trade offs for public service delivery or future government borrowing”. Although this isn’t a formal pay offer – that will depend on what the NHSPRB and DDRB recommend, it sets the framework in which they are likely to operate.

Nurses pay rise 2023

The majority of nurses in the UK are employed on Agenda for Change terms and conditions. Because of this, the section above on the 2023 AfC pay rise also applies to nurses.

Doctors pay rise 2023

Note: we have a separate article with the latest news on Doctors pay rises.

The Government awarded most doctors in England a 6% pay increase for 2023/24, and in November 2023 proposed an additional 4.95% increase for consultants, subject to approval in a ballot of BMA members.

The BMA argues that this amounts to a real terms pay cut and its members launched a series of strikes in 2023.

Consultants agreed a deal in April 2024 covering pay for the 2023/24 year but, in April 2024 the dispute between junior doctors and the government over pay remained unresolved.

Very Senior Manager Pay Rise 2023

The Government awarded Very Senior Managers (VSM) in the NHS a 5% pay increase for 2023/24. A further 0.5% has been allocated to address a number of historical pay anomalies. This award follows a 3% pay increase for 2022/23. 

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