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NHS Pay Offer Means £2,000 Pay Cut

Saturday, June 30, 2018


On NHS' 70th birthday, the Health Secretary's party pooper pay offer sees midwives set to lose more than £2,000 in real terms.

The Government’s ‘birthday present’ to hard-pressed NHS staff is a real terms pay cut of up to £2,500, GMB, the union for NHS workers, has warned today.

The new analysis comes as thousands of NHS staff take to the streets this week [Saturday 30 June] to celebrate the National Health Service’s achievements on its 70th anniversary and protest against cuts and privatisation.

Midwives at the top of their pay bands are set to lose out on a total of £2,195 in real terms over the course of three years.

Nurses are set to lose out on £1,773 in real terms.  

By contrast, nurses received a ‘considerable improvement’ in their salaries in the 1940s after Nye Bevan founded the NHS. [2]

The NHS Pay Review Body warned this week that “there is a workforce gap which is creating an unsustainably high level of vacancies, work pressures and potential risks to patient care.” [3]

Under the Government’s pay offer, the 40 per cent of NHS staff in England at the top of their pay bands will see their wages increase by 6.5 per cent over three years, well below projected inflation rates.

In total, 87% of GMB’s NHS members voted ‘no’ to the NHS pay deal.

GMB regions will now begin planning for the next steps in our battle to end the pay pinch in the NHS and secure fair pay and conditions.

Rachel Harrison, GMB National Officer for the NHS, said:

“Jeremy Hunt has some cheek imposing a real terms pay cut of thousands of pounds on hard-working NHS staff.

"After nearly a decade of wage freezes and caps that has seen our dedicated NHS and ambulance workers' pay pinched, our members have delivered an overwhelming verdict. It's a no from us.

"On the NHS' seventieth birthday, the Health Secretary has soured the mood with his party pooper of a pay offer.

"If Jeremy Hunt thinks he can pull the wool over our members' eyes, he's got another think coming."

Contact: GMB Press Office on 07958 156846 or at

Notes to Editors:

[1] Projected real-terms losses for top-of-band NHS workers


Real-terms loss

Example job

Band 2



Band 3


999 Call Handler

Band 4


Clinical Coder

Band 5


Staff Nurse

Band 6



Band 7


Ward Manager

GMB analysis of cumulative real-terms losses over three years as measured by forecast RPI inflation, as estimated by the Office for Budgetary Responsibility.

[2] Nursing Times, Have nurses ever been paid their due?, 10 January 2008

[3] National Health Service Pay Review Body 31st report: 2018, 27 June 2018, page 63

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