More than a million NHS staff are set to benefit as the new pay deal Agenda for Change is rolled out across the country from today.
The pay reforms are part of the biggest job evaluation exercise ever undertaken that will see staff matched to a new pay band and receive a fair reward for the jobs they do.
Some nurses will get up to £80,000 under the reforms, which will cost the taxpayer £4bn.
Agenda for Change will also ensure that staff get more opportunities to gain new responsibilities and roles and progress within the NHS.
Benefits of the new reforms include:
– The NHS minimum wage has been increased to £5.69 an hour Ð a pay boost of £35 per week
– The starting salary of a newly-registered nurse has been increased from £17,060 to £18,114 on par with newly-qualified teachers, while senior nurses could earn more than £80,000 a year
– Ambulance men and women will receive a pay boost in the region of 10 to 20 per cent and will now be paid, like other staff, for unsocial hours working
– All staff will benefit from a 10 per cent pay deal over three years from 2003-05; and
– All staff will benefit from the use of the NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework to support the effective use of training and career progression through the ranks.
By next March, the majority of NHS staff will be matched to a new pay band and, by September, all staff will be assimilated. This means most staff should see the difference in their pay packets by next summer.
Health secretary John Hutton said: “For the first time in over 50 years, the jobs that NHS staff do have been reviewed and evaluated to ensure fair pay and a clear pathway for career progression. It amounts to the biggest job evaluation process ever undertaken.
“Agenda for Change means we will break through the glass ceiling that holds back NHS staff. It means people will get proper reward for the job they do, rather than the title they hold.
“As these new roles develop, patients will also experience faster treatment and a more streamlined care pathway.”
Hutton said the Government has invested more than £1bn in the Agenda for Change.