NHS employees and unions in Scotland have formally accepted a pay rise of at least 9% over the next three years.
The increase, which is the most generous health pay uplift anywhere in the UK, will benefit 147,000 ‘Agenda for Change’ employees including all nurses, paramedics and allied health professionals.
It has been agreed as part of a package in which the pay rise is linked to a commitment to reform four areas of terms and conditions. The package will ensure that NHS staff will continue to receive a fair wage, and that the NHS will be able to deliver the flexible services needed for the future.
Employees earning up to £80,000 will receive a minimum cumulative uplift of 9% while those on £80,000 or more will get a flat rate increase of £1,600 a year. Staff not at the top of their pay bands will also receive any incremental progression they are due.
The offer was agreed between the Scottish Government, NHS employers and unions in June. A consultative ballot closed on Wednesday and was formally accepted today.
Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said:
“Scotland’s NHS is founded on the hard work and dedication of its staff. This agreement is a recognition of that hard work.
“I’m delighted that NHS ‘Agenda for Change’ staff have voted to accept our offer of a pay rise of at least 9% over the next three years. This rise – which is linked to a commitment to reform some terms and conditions – will be up to 27% for some staff. That is the highest health uplift in the UK.
“This pay rise can help recruitment and retention and ensure that our NHS remains an attractive employment option for many.”
By 2020/21, Scottish staff will be significantly better paid than NHS staff anywhere else in the UK. For example, relative to staff in England:
- Pay for a porter at the top of Band 2 will be over £1,200 more
- Pay for a healthcare assistant at the top of Band 3 will be over £1,450 more
- Pay for a healthcare support worker at the top of Band 4 will be over £800 more
- Pay for a ward nurse at the top of Band 5 will be over £1,030 more
- Pay for a paramedic at the top of Band 6 will be nearly £1,280 more
- Pay for an advanced nurse practitioner at the top of Band 7 will be over £1,500 more
The four areas of reform to terms and conditions are: sickness absence policy; organisational change and future protection of earnings; policy on time off for those who have worked additional hours and appraisal and career progression.
Details of any changes to terms and conditions will be agreed by December 2018 with implementation from April 2019.