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NHS pay deal FAQ - what does it mean for you?

How big a pay rise will I receive?

It all depends on your current band and experience in your current role.

Nurses at the top of their current pay band will probably receive a 6.5% pay rise over three years, from April 2018 to April 2021.

But if you are at the bottom of your current pay band, you will receive anywhere between 9% and 22%.

To work out exactly how much, visit the NHS pay calculator here.

I don’t like this deal, how can I vote against it?

Unions will put the deal to their members via consultations, starting on 23 April and running until 5 June. You must be a member of one of these unions to vote on the pay deal.

During the consultation period, you will be able to vote in favour for the deal, or vote against it.

If you are a member of the Royal College of Nursing, you must be a nurse who will be directly affected by this deal in order to vote.

RCN members from all UK countries are eligible to vote.

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Does this pay deal affect staff in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland too?

No, this deal is only for NHS workers in England.

But if the unions agree to this pay agreement, money will also be made available to the devolved nations of the UK. The amount will be decided by the Barnett formula, which takes the amount spent on public services in England and calculates an appropriate sum to filter through to the other UK nations.

It will then be down to the unions in each of these countries to agree a pay deal with the respective NHS employers.

So why are all members of the RCN, including those outside of England, allowed to vote on a pay deal for England?

While the votes cast by members in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will not be used to define whether the deal in England is accepted, they will be used to shape negotiations for future pay deals in these countries.

The RCN has already stated its intention to ‘push for a similar deal’ for the rest of the UK.

When will nurses in other UK nations get a pay rise?

This depends on when the unions in these countries can agree a proposal with the respective NHS employers.

As mentioned above, the votes cast by union member nurses in these nations will have an impact on the type of deal agreed, so you may have to wait a bit longer, until the consultation for England is approaching a close.

RCN Scotland has stated that they 'want to move quickly' to secure the best deal for their members, and are pushing the Scottish Government to agree a pay offer 'as quickly as possible'.

What’s the RCN’s position on this proposal?

The RCN will be encouraging their members to vote in favour of the pay deal.

If the deal is agreed, when will I get my pay rise?

Nurses in England will have to wait until July for their pay rise, but it will be backdated to 1 April.

What about holiday and unsocial hours payments?

Holiday is unaffected, as are unsocial hours payments.

What about the system of increments on Agenda for Change?

Automatic increments have been amended as part of this deal. Instead, they will be based on increased skills and development.

There will be more appraisals in their place to evaluate this which, according to Unite the Union's health negotiator Sarah Carpenter, 'most people will pass through'. 

I work in a GP practice, will I get a pay rise too?

Unless you happen to be on an Agenda for Change contract, then no. Practice nurses, and other nurses working in GP surgeries, have their pay decided by the practice’s GP partners and so will not be affected by this pay deal.