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All smiles: NHS staff pay rise backed by Unions

21 March 2018

More than a million NHS workers in England are set for a 6.5% pay rise following months of debate over the 1% pay cap.

The 6.5 per cent is just the minimum pay rise - some staff could get a 29 per cent pay increase.

Governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will decide themselves whether to roll out the same pay rise.

If they give the nod, the extra pay will be in July wage packets, backdated to April.

Describing the agreement as a "something for something deal", health and social care secretary Jeremy Hunt said the pay offer reflects "public appreciation" for how much NHS staff "have done and continue to do".

Pay bands will be changed so that workers can move more quickly through their pay grade.

Doctors, dentists and some senior managers will not be included.

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The cap has affected other workers including local government staff.

If it is struck then nurses, midwives, ambulance drivers, porters, and other staff would see the end of a pay cap which has lasted seven years.

It was previously feared more NHS workers would be forced to give up a day's holiday in return for the salary increase, but the government has now scrapped that plan.

The £4 billion deal will be put into effect with money coming from the Government rather than existing budgets.

The NHS has been under pressure to retain staff, after it was revealed that one in 10 nurses were leaving the public sector in England every year.

Of the 14 unions, only the GMB said it would recommend rejecting the deal, saying it was a real terms pay cut for the workers.

"It won't solve every problem in the NHS, but would go a long way towards making dedicated health staff feel more valued, lift flagging morale, and help turn the tide on employers' staffing problems".

All smiles: NHS staff pay rise backed by Unions