Hospital doctor pay scales for 2018/2019

The Conservative Government awarded a pay rise of 1.5% for 2018/2019 in England for consultants.

However, the uplift for the 2003 consultant contract was only effective from 1 October 2018 and has not been backdated to 1 April 2018.

This means that the effective value of the uplift for this year is 0.75%.

NHS pay was frozen in 2012 and 2013, and since 2014 rises have been limited to 1%.

Consultant pay scales and CEAs are set to change with the launch of a much-delayed new contract in 2019, after years of negotiation between the Government and the BMA.

The Government has been committed to introducing ‘seven-day services’ among medical staff – without increasing the pay envelope.

Consultant (2003 contract) basic salary

Threshold            Years completed  Basic salary (£)  Next threshold

1                             0                               77,913                  1 year

2                             1                                80,352                 1 year

3                             2                                82,792                 1 year

4                             3                                85,232                  1 year

5                             4                                 87,655                 5 years

6                             9                                 93,459                 5 years

7                             14                               99,254                 5 years

8                             19                               105,042                 –

Clinical Excellence Awards

Awarded by local committees

Level 1                  3,016

Level 2                  6,032

Level 3                  9,048

Level 4                  12,064

Level 5                  15,080

Level 6                  18,096

Level 7                  24,124

Level 8                  30,160

Level 9                  36,192

Awarded by ACCEA

Level 9 (Bronze)               36,192

Level 10 (Silver)                47,582

Level 11 (Gold)                  59,477

Level 12 (Platinum)           77,320

Specialty Doctor Pay Scale

Scale value          Basic salary (£)   Period before next pay point

Min                        39,060                  1 year

1                             42,400                 1 year

2                             46,742                 1 year

3                             49,069                 1 year

4                             52,422                 1 year

Threshold 1

5                             55,762                  2 years

6                             59,177                  2 years

7                             62,593                  2 years

Threshold 2

8                             66,009                  3 years

9                             69,424                  3 years

10                           72,840                   –

Trainee Doctors Basic Pay Scales (2016 Contract)


Nodal Point 1             27,146


Nodal Point 2             31,422


Nodal Point 3             37,191


Nodal Point 4             47,132


Nodal Point 3             37,191


Nodal Point 4            47,132

Read the full pay scales, including Weekend Allowances and On-call Availability Allowance.

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186 Responses to “Hospital doctor pay scales for 2018/2019”

  1. A Doc says:

    The UK health system is pretty hopeless to say the least when you compare to The US. I know US health system can be very expensive but having worked as a doctor on both sides of the Atlantic, I feel the NHS has failed the UK public.

    1. Only thing hospitals care is breach times, a way of fooling the public to manipulate the statistics.
    2. Doctors don’t have any say and the morale is pretty low among consultants.
    3. People who are not medically qualified consultant doctors like nurse consultants, reporting radiographers etc can function independently. What is the point in me going to medial school. It’s just another cost cutting measure!
    4. Doctors are poorly paid
    5. Training of junior doctors is very much constrained due to lack of interest from the consultants… Poor morale
    6. Consultants don’t get adequate suppoert to attend courses and keep their skills upto date due to financial restrictions from the nhs trusts.
    7. Not adequate research happening in the UK
    8. Why should GPs get paid more than specialaist consultants? This doesn’t happen in the US. Simple logic… If you spend more time training to be a specialist, you get paid more..

    I can go on, but will stop here for the moment.

    Ex- NHS Consultant (glad I left the UK)

  2. another doc says:

    agree with all A Doc said…pretty low morale amongst NHS consultants – assessed for professional development each year but no time or financial assistance for such activities. Most hospitals have low staffing levels and increasingly we are being asked to do more and more for less and less. IT systems are a joke…

  3. Had had enough registrar says:

    Totally agree with A doc. Just cant wait to get my CCT and leave this place. There are better health systems in the world at the moment from a working life view point. This in not the NHS/health system I joined…Its all manager/nurse led with doctors being treated like house dogs. On the other side consultants need to grow a spine as well to stop this problem spreading any further.

  4. A person says:

    There are some serious problems in the NHS. Pay, morale, direction, constant political interference poor care ect ect but it is free at the point of care for all, all of you who do not believe in this principle please exit the country now. For all it’s faults the NHS will at least mistreat people reasonably equally. Just make sure you give enough service to pay back your subsidised training.

  5. Ian says:

    Shame the UK resident Docs on this site don’t feel the love the public have for what they do. Although we should be proud of the NHS, more laypersons are realising clinical staff and patients are getting a worse deal than the administrators. How do you turn this behemoth around?

  6. Not a Happy Consultant says:

    I agree with most of the previous comments.
    The scale of the limitations of consultant power both
    in hospital & with GP dealings is shocking.
    The “divide & role” game that the government is playing with
    Doctors in general and doctors & other staff is realy counterproductive
    causing very serious consequances.
    The new GMC regulation came to put more fuel to the fire
    causing more doctors to retire early or migrate outside UK.

  7. Outside Observer says:

    Whether or not the public have a heartfelt love for the services the NHS staff provide is besides the point. A fair days pay for a hard days work. Capitalist society. Surely these men and women didn’t climb to the top of their class and dedicate years to medical school to not be rewarded fairly in the end. Regards to what is fair, that would be easy to figure out by a few economists.

  8. NHS is bad says:

    The only comments I will give to GMC and NHS are:

    1. thanks to GMC / NHS for making our lives more difficult than ever. We are run by muppets.
    2. thanks for the low paid. Our basic salary after working 13 years in NHS is similar to a train driver
    3. Morale are all low within the medical teams. Thanks to the restructuring of the NHS by idiots. We, doctors, have no say!

    Now, I am leaving UK for good. Thanks for training me as a doctor but I cannot live like this anymore.

  9. A registrar says:

    Agree with so much of the above. I have just returned from working in Aus to a registrar post here in the UK. (Taking a greater than 50% paycut. Came back for family reasons). The difference is just phenominal. Patients here suffer every day due the lack of resources. There is no sign of anything getting better, just acceptance that this is the way things are.

    The NHS is run by trumped up Nurses, it badly needs more privatisation. The market would sort people into their true merit, and healthcare would once again be led by doctors as it is in Aus and other western countries with better systems.

    Desperately missing my better life in Aus, already counting down the days to CCT, will be leaving immediately.

  10. Surgical SpR says:

    Frankly I don’t know why we bother- I worked out that over the last 2 weeks my average earnings have been 8.33 per hour- I got more than this when I worked as an hca at med school, and I didn’t have to pay gmc, MPS, bma, ISCP, CPD etc…

  11. Corporate Manager says:

    I see only Medics in here. Try being a bitter Med Sec for years on a capped £21k salary providing support to a bunch of whinging academics – of all ages, nationalities and specialities – it seems your attitudes towards working hard and earning more tax-payers money than the rest of the population feels you deserve, fit right in with British culture.
    I’ve no degree, am from a Midlands Council estate and poor upbringing and am under 30, I run a Private Healthcare Management company outside the remits of 9-5, am in middle-management 9-5 for the NHS North East and am so proud to earn near 40k. Glad to see your time & efforts are focussed on helping people than earning an extra buck.

  12. chris says:

    Good to see a lot of dysfunctional, bitter people expressing themselves. Particularly like the delusion that the US health care system is better than UK – basically because they pay more and treat wealthy people. And as for the argument that consultants should be paid more than GP’s this simply reflects complete ignorance of how the UK health system works. Consultants are not superior to anyone in the UK. They specialise in one area so much now their job is easy. All their cases are screened by hardworking , well trained, just as intelligent GP’s who could have been a consultant but decided to choose for a more interesting career. In over 30 years of medicine I find it amazing that the chip on the shoulder of the underpaid consultant still exists! I can hear him on his ward round now “bloody GP’s” . You have no idea!

  13. breith says:

    I agree with the above statements, it’s a disgrace that non clinical staff ie. managers should receive more salary than a qualified Doctor or Nursing Staff, especially after all the trading they have had to do. Something very wrong here.

  14. AUK says:

    Consultant moral is dropping year on year. Professional independence is being eroded in it does not help that directions often come from people with significantly less training, expertise (nurses, NHS managers etc) and wit.
    Salaries are mediocre for hours worked especially if you work in a high brow high pressure teaching hospital. I am the lowest paid (as a new hospital consultant) amongst all close friends and family members of the same age. Their starting salaries 12 years ago were usually what I earn now.
    I have seen quite a few Western European doctors returning to their home countries recently due to significantly better terms there. They are trying to get me there too and offering me jobs usually paid well above tariff.
    Pharmaceutical industry also offers excellent terms with at least comparable job security and benefits (pension, private health insurance, car allowance…). The latter is often not considered by us and one of the few areas were the UK still has some expertise.

  15. Socrates says:

    It is amazing why people (doctors) who don’t have qualifications to run, even a grocery shop, think they can run a Hospital or send directions to whoever is….
    This poor mentality is finally being changed and let people who have management qualifications to manage and you guys should focus in what you studied for, which is treat sick people!
    You guys with absurd salaries (specially the extra pay) are taking the NHS to bankruptcy and you even dare to complain and say people should pay for your extra courses who will only beneficiate you?? Please, just focus on your job and leave the management for competent people!

    Sentence if the day:

    “Truly, being knowledgable in a certain subject, doesn’t make us wise”

  16. redben says:

    Unfortunately the comments by Socrates are more consistent with a football player than a philosopher! The problem is that doctors are expected to be managers in addition to being clinicians. That begs the question what are the managers actually doing! Many doctors do not think they can run hospitals and are quite happy sticking to clinical commitments but are forced to become more involved with management and jump through hoops to this end also encouraged by the GMC and politicians.
    Not so sure about the comment from Chris regarding GP’s either. As a medical registrar in the past I took lots of calls from GP’s and it became fairly obvious that they had no clue what they were doing or trying to do! Some GP’s are very intelligent and I agree could have become hospital consultants but by the same token a lot of people going into GP land could not make it in hospital medicine and want a more flexible job plan which is essentially better paid and does not require on call commitment.

  17. Docx says:

    Socrates, it’s interesting that amidst your vitriolic diatribe you appear to have invented a new application for the word ‘beneficiate’. I can only assume that you meant ‘benefit’! Not only does this totally undermine your credibility, it also illustrates the problem facing doctors throughout the NHS, namely managers talking a lot but saying nothing and using big new words they don’t understand. In addition, these courses do benefit the service user as they allow us to learn new skills and increase productivity!

    In reply to your green grocer analogy, you are correct! You wouldn’t want a doctor to manage one, you would want someone who knows vegetables! Similarly, to manage a clinical service you need someone who knows clinical medicine, and that’s not something they cover in the MBA course.

  18. an AHP says:

    I actually stumbled on this site whilst looking for something else, and was kind of compelled to comment, I agree with somethings, the NHS needs to be run better, there needs to be fairer recompense in terms of manager- clinician as without the clinical expertise of all healthcare professionals managers are superfluous to need.
    As a passionate AHP I have seen great doctors, consultants and nurses but people also need to wake up and see the system driven game of divide and conquer going on, i.e pit doctor against nurse and nurse against AHP, whilst the chaos is going on reorganise in the pretext of better integration and co production.
    If Clinicians do not cease being insular and living in brittle silos we will soon find ourselves much worse off, talk less of patient quality.
    Mid Staffs is only the begining if this unwieldy behemoth of a health service doesnot wake up.
    It doesnt take an economist to know that the 20Bn to be found wont come from pay cuts but from innovative and creative clinical services, and since creativity rarely thrives under command and control.structures such as the NHS the future looks pretty dire from here.
    So I will say to all those here who are still in need to look up..wake up and smell the coffee …our strength lies in collaboration and as a clinical community if we really want to better our lot and address this crazy management- clinical chasm!!!!

  19. Training to be a doctor says:

    i stumbled onto this and thanks for the help – now will go somewhere else unless the system changes.

  20. Michael says:

    To the comment by A Registrar.

    I work in medical admin in Australia at the moment. The reason you get paid more in Australia is because it costs twice as much to live, so stop complaining.

    And if you think these problems are just in the NHS then you need to take a proper look at other countries healthcare systems. The hospital I work at is tens of millions of dollars in debt and making hundreds redundant.

  21. Surprised says:

    I am surprised so few doctors here are grateful for the opportunity they got to study medicine in their own country, partly subsidized by other tax payer. I tried to study Medicine in my home country but got drawn out twice, so did not get the opportunity at the time. It is a great profession to be able to serve other people and get paid for that too. Well of course the NHS can improve and so can can the pay but the pay is not that low since you can pay your rent and have a nice holiday so don’t complain all the time. Moreover, speak with people around you, fresh graduates with no good job prospects or lower salaries also exist. But yes if you only speak with banker friends then your salary seems low. But the bankers don’t get the opportunity to serve other people in the way you do.
    So, yes be grateful for what you have and yes if money is the issue you can go abroad for a few years to save some money and then you can come back to help out in the UK again.

  22. Voiceofreason says:

    We work in a communist system, in a capitalist country. Consequently, the public are happier to pay for a hair-cut than a health check. The basic salary of a day one doctor (ie. someone with top school examination results and at least two, if not three degrees – MB ChB plus BSc) is about the same as that of a traffic warden in Westminster. The basic salary of a Registrar (ie a specialist doctor, often with further higher degrees eg. MD, PhD, plus a minimum of 4 years of postqualification medical experience, who has been sufficiently successful to acquire a specialist training number, who is making life changing decisions on large numbers of patients on a daily basis) is slightly less that that of a train driver. This is without factoring in obligatory charges for training, professional registration, indemnity etc.

    Medicine provides additional motivation to financial compensation but it is naive to think that the salary of a profession does not impact upon the morale of employees or recruitment of high quality individuals in the future. More practically, it is not made clear to the public that the consequence of this insulting underpayment will be privatisation. Under that system, the hourly rate for a medical consultation is likely to exceed that of a plumber. A large number of people without large disposable incomes, who are unfortunate enough to become unwell, will not be able to afford healthcare that even approaches what they are currently offered on the NHS. To correct medics’ salaries within the NHS framework, reflecting their intellect, work load and level of responsibility might well prove a more affordable option.

  23. ian groves says:

    My god this poor NHS is responsible for training and showing the rest of the world how to train and invest in the top doctors in the world, but im sorry just because you don’t earn the same or as much as a doc in the usa your leaving and going to work there. we should be proud of our NHS FREE TO ALL or is that the problem, lets charge every one just to give you people a rise try working down a mine with just 3` of space to work in and 2` of that is water, day in and day out for less than a dustman, just be thankful you had the right to an education ,the opportunity to train as a doctor, help make the NHS great again

  24. Health Economist says:

    The comments on this blog are a testament to why doctors should stick to medicine and leave the health decisions to the experts. The reason GPs earn more than specialists is because they save more lives. More effective = better pay. Simple economics.

  25. A medical student says:

    My Dad is a consultant anaesthetist, who works unbelievably hard – with little financial gain in comparison to such a job in the city one could do with similar capabilities. He warned about the bullshit of the NHS before I choose to apply for medicine. Now I am in 3rd year at one of the most prestigious medical schools in the UK, and having never encountered a doctor satisfied with his job/salary etc am potentially regretting the decision to study medicine – at the very least I know i will not be staying in the UK for my career if the current state of the healthcare system continues.

  26. nhsobserver says:

    A lot of junior doctors (the vast majority) are pretty useless. They are poor at diagnosis and shockingly bad at prescribing. I actually think they contribute to the money wastage within the NHS due to re-admissions etc. God knows what medical schools teach them, they just follow and nod their heads to consultants.

  27. happy its over says:

    I’ve just taken early retirement at 54.

    Best decision ever! The hoop jumping now required by jumped up bureaucrats.. and especially by quangos such as GMC have made our jobs more miserable year by year.

    How did we allow ourselves to become so intimidated?

  28. Raheem says:

    With reference to your comment Ian Groves, NHS doctors work damn hard to provide the best possible patient care. Comparing doctors to a miner is comparing chalk and cheese. Doctors work in pressurised environments where at times it’s a matter of a patients life & death!

    In my opinion a doctor should be highly paid not bloody footballers! Without doctors when you and I are sick, we should go to bus drivers or bankers to get a diagnosis? I am not surprised doctors are leaving the NHS. They have no say in their work environment and nurses do? How does that work? Doctors train for years only to work as NHS donkeys?

    Just think about this Ian, if all the doctors went on strike over pay/conditions and refuse to see any patients, how would that affect the population? Doctors have to get a license to practice, revalidate and gain yearly appraisals as well as undergo a number or exams/training programmes. What other profession faces all this red tape and has to stand for rubbish from the public, governing bodies and other bureaucrats??

    Rant over.


  29. A Surgeon says:

    Situation is even more helpless here in Ireland though we still enjoy some clinical freedom.My take home on new Irish contract is 4800 euros.A single mother with 3 children take same in social welfare benefits.It look like UK and Ireland are not places to work.For those who think doctors can not run grocery store,world best run hospitals are still run by doctors.

  30. Disappointed Patient says:

    There are far too many hierarchies in the NHS system – Management are paid far, far too much to sit behind desks typing up fudged statistics and reports.
    The hardest working Doctor’s I have seen are the ones that work in A&E (More specifically the Junior Doctors – F2’s and such like).
    Junior Doctor’s are supposed to be guided by a senior Consultant and monitored – but that is simply not true – I have seen that for myself just 2 weeks ago.
    Overall, the NHS needs a good shake up – A better system needs to be put in place.
    The system used to operate better when a Hospital had a Matron to run things on the wards – now, it is impossible for a patient to understand who is in charge on a ward, causing confusion and delays to treatment, because often, the Consultants aren’t even sure who is in charge of the ward either.

  31. What's going to happen says:

    I love being a doctor and love this beautiful field of medicine. However I have dreams and practical needs which cannot be filled with what I’m getting at present. I look around and see how we reward other less demanding professions and how managememt feels they know it all and deserve to be on the top of the food chain. I was a grade A student and know that I could have excelled in any academics I was interested in…….including management degrees…
    But what’s going to happen….the best minds are going to stop taking medicine….those that do, will not bother to specialise but would rather work as G.Ps….why study and work more to earn less….you gotta be kidding….
    It takes years to train doctors….and as more drop out we are going to just continue hiring more doctors from other countries as it would be impossible to fill all the posts required and quiet frankly impossible to get along without the field of medicine….
    Next time you get sick or have a loved one in the hospital fighting for their lives, just think…..would you like the best trained and best minds fighting for their lives or……
    I have already told me son to choose a different field….this isn’t the time or era to be a doctor….

  32. wiz says:

    Doctors are still professionals. They are not volunteers. There needs to be suitable reward for the hours, stress, continuous examinations they go through. Most people would find it ridiculous to compare the salary of a mechanic with that of a lawyer. Why should a doctor and a miner be any different. If you train for longer, have to pass strenuous examinations and be academically brilliant, should you not deserve better pay as a result?

  33. a-nhs-patient says:

    Doctors are among the most hardworking and the most academically able professionals. The difference is that doctors are caring for sick people, fighting diseases, serious illness to save lives. Doctors in NHS deserve the highest respect from the general public. The government must give doctors autonomy in managing their patients and words, instead of treating them like shaft horses who get whipped all the time.

  34. Primus Designia says:

    Don’t forget; before the Tories can get their hands on the NHS to fully privatise it they must first wreck it and create shortages so as to make it profitable.

  35. Final MB med student says:

    This has been an extremely intriguing thread to pour over! Nonetheless I must say medics are meant to be altruistic individuals giving their utmost for their patients. I even have foreign superiors whom believe that doctors are overpaid in the UK. I understand the logic…medicine is a calling not just a job. However, I stopped staring at my lecture notes and reflected on what it took for me to get to this very early stage of my medical career.

    1. I had to study from the age of 11, starting secondary school and culminating with straight A*s in over 10 GCSEs.
    2. I had to work extremely hard to secure straight As at A-levels, studying whilst others played.
    3. I had to do enumerable amounts of extracurricular activities to stand out beating thousands to gain my place at medical school.
    4. Even now in medical school, medics may party hard, but we study an unholy amount of hours after long days on the wards to be at the top of our game.
    5. The studying never ends until one retires…and I am only at the beginning! (Can you imagine still studying when you are 50 and people attacking your salary implying that one is undeserving?)

    The counter argument would be that we all knew that this is what medicine entailed yet we still pursued such a career.

    Now consider breaking the moral of all these people who chose this path because we are meant to be the “do-gooders” of this world. I have taken time to outline how we all begin in medicine to signify that with this level of education medics could have gone on to be anything in this capitalistic world. Do we want to propagate more intelligent individuals chasing high paying city jobs after studying with subsidised fees from taxpayers? (every student is subsidised yet don’t have to work consistently as hard for the direct benefit of the public or as long as a why all the complaints of not giving back!?) So please don’t berate those who complain of poor pay and working conditions with the offer of well if you don’t like it leave…because when, not if, doctors stop tolerating conditions it is the public that will heavily suffer, and no doctor wants to see that happen! We all know what happened in breaking bad lol!The NHS at the moment seems unsustainable but raise the moral of healthcare staff and watch how ways of improvement will spring up…a freer mind is a more innovative mind.

  36. Jamie says:

    Health Economist –
    “The comments on this blog are a testament to why doctors should stick to medicine and leave the health decisions to the experts. The reason GPs earn more than specialists is because they save more lives. More effective = better pay. Simple economics.”

    That’s why all trusts throughout the country are moving away from non clinical management and encouraging clinicians to take up management roles? As the current situation isn’t working. Simples (moron).

    Firstly, I love it when admin people come on sites like this and say “stop complaining” why don’t you just not bother, as I guarantee you in your admin role if you were asked to work a bank holiday or overtime for nothing you’d be kicking up a massive, huge fuss with complaints. Also, Australia does have a better quality of life for doctors the basic work hours is 38 per week and overtime is paid at TWICE the basic.

    Corporate Manager –
    “I see only Medics in here.”
    Well it is a Doctors salary scale discussion, who did you expect?

    “Try being a bitter Med Sec for years on a capped £21k salary providing support to a bunch of whinging academics – of all ages, nationalities and specialities”

    So you are comparing someone with (prob) a high school level education to someone with a doctorate level of education? No offence but I think I do deserve a higher salary…and just for your information, as someone with a doctorate level education and working 5 years as a doctor my basic 9-5 salary is actually only £10k more than the secretaries.

    “it seems your attitudes towards working hard and earning more tax-payers money than the rest of the population feels you deserve, fit right in with British culture.”
    Are you saying we don’t work hard? Do you have any idea of how many hundreds of unpaid hours I have given up to the British public? Do you have any idea of how little of my “postgraduate training” is actually training? It is 95% service provision with a lip service paid to training me. The rest of my education is funded out of my own pocket at £400+ a course. I have spent in the last 2 years over 4k on exams, courses, and of which was paid by myself.

    “I’ve no degree, am from a Midlands Council estate and poor upbringing and am under 30, I run a Private Healthcare Management company outside the remits of 9-5, am in middle-management 9-5 for the NHS North East and am so proud to earn near 40k. Glad to see your time & efforts are focussed on helping people than earning an extra buck.”

    That’s nice, I also come from a single parent family and an area of deprivation. I do have a medical degree that I had to put myself in £50k of debt for. I am also under 30. I also have responsibility for peoples lives. I run cardiac arrests, I tell families they have cancer, I have professional exams behind me….and yet I earn nearly 6k less for my basic 9-5 salary than you, in middle management…I’d be proud too if I was you…myself, I’m just resentful.

  37. orthopaedic registrar says:

    NHS’s example is like a plane being flown by air hostesses (nurses) & stewards (managers) with pilots (consultants) standing aside & watching it. You can imagine the ultimate fate of that Plane!
    I have 2 degrees in Medicine 1 graduate & 1 post graduate & am intelligent enough to do an MBA if wanted.
    Doctors really work hard & deserve to be paid well.
    One more thing NHS is slowly being privatised without public knowing it & will probably be completely private in next 5 years. You can imagine what the healthcare will be then !

  38. proud mum says:

    Trumped up nurses! What a cheek my daughter an ICU specialist nurse works very long hours is hugely skilled completely dedicated works in pretty second rate conditions and gets paid half the salary of a registrar and a lot less than a doctor! What would happen without the nurses?

  39. Get a Life says:

    First time on here and gobsmacked by the whinging going on from a bunch of privileged professionals, living privileged lives in a rich, safe country which provides healthcare free at the point of access to all, not just the few who can afford it like the US (and Australia).

    I worked in banking before becoming a doctor and have worked in both the NHS and Australian systems. I’ve just returned from 2 years in NSW. To all those on here who have exclaimed ‘that’s it I’m off’ and ‘I can’t wait to get away from the NHS’, I say please go. Get yourselves off this chat forum, grow a pair and book yourself a ticket to Australia. Jump through the hoops, uproot your family, give up your privileged recession proof training or consultant post and nick off, leave the rest of us to get on with our jobs and not be polluted by your bilious whinging.

    I hope that once you’re there you realise just how lucky you were. If you’re lucky enough, you might not to have to complete 10 years in some godforsaken town in rural Australia before being allowed to work in the city. Then when you’ve navigated one of the most slovenly, unmotivated and inefficient bureaucracies in the western world to get general/specialist registration you can wallow in your great wage until you realise that the cost of living swallows most of it. Luxuriate in the training and study leave that you apparently have, until you realise that it is neither funded or allowed. Refer your patients for surgery on the public system only to find that they have no public outpatient follow-up and cannot afford to pay to see the surgeon in rooms. Explain to your next patient that the second question they ask will tip them into another cost bracket for their consultation. Get your patient out of A+E in four hours and send them to a ward with no out of hours registrar cover where they won’t be seen until the next day. Oh its all rosy in Australia. I could go on.

    Despite all this I loved working in Australia, as I love working in the NHS. Sure some things are better, some things are not as good. What irks me is people on forums like this who poison the morale of their colleagues and threaten to leave the system to make a point. I say go, go, go. Put your money where your mouth is and the rest of us can get on with doing a decent job and putting our efforts into making the NHS work. If you want to compare your wages to those of bankers, go and be a banker. Why on earth did you go into medicine? If you want to go and work in Australia, go and work in Australia, stop threatening and do it, leave us all in peace.

  40. kiwi doc says:

    Left the NHS in 2004 (had been a consultant surgeon for 3 years). Thank God I moved!
    No contemporary who stayed in the NHS I now speak to is happy. Salaries have barely changed since I left. We have many of the same challenges in NZ as I left behind providing public healthcare, dealing with hospital management, politicians setting targets etc. etc., but overall I have never regretted making the move.

    My salary (with private practice added) is now well in excess of what I would ever have earned in the NHS. I feel well rewarded for all the study/training/hours I put in to get here.I still provide a full-time public commitment. My quality of life is excellent – and judging by the number of juniors from the UK that we have passing through and then choosing to stay – the exodus from the NHS has already started.

    Personally have some agreement with ‘Get a Life’ though – I would not choose to work in the Australian system.

  41. torio says:

    Career in medicine is no longer attractive. UK salaries at current tax rate will not attract even docs from Eastern Europe, so forget about imports and forget about brightest homegrown minds going into medicine as well.

    Idiotic managers decide on (not)providing healthcare , yet doctors are in the field taking responsibility.

    Helping patients? Yes, but you can bet you will also harm sick people for making profit for managers as well.
    Not providing healthcare? = less spent = more profit from money which were meant to treat sick = bonus for manager. Top that with unsocial workhours , constant stress all for a salary of grocery store manager and you got it.
    And dont even get me started on nurses..most of them are truly an unappreciated heroes

  42. Jamie says:

    But I do agree, nurses should be paid more.

  43. JackTheLad says:

    Thank you all for all the comments. I can see the frustration of Doctors. Well you have to ask yourself why you went into medicine in the first place?

    I am an Physiotherapist with “some more skills” than the average physios earning £65,000 on the NHS at the age of 32. I am glad I went to specialise in musculoskeletal medicine. I work from 0800-1600 with a lunch break of 30minutes from Mon to Friday.
    My weekly hours are 37.5.

    I love the NHS and what it stands for. So good luck to the doctors going abroad, I am staying put

  44. Jamie says:

    65k for a 37.5 hour week?! No wonder you are happy to stay put in the NHS. That’s almost a consultant salary.

  45. Silver says:

    A comment from abroad. A non uk doctor say.
    Sorry to all of the bad nhs-thinkers but looking from outside the sistem I can tell you that tha salary scale of a consultant is amongs the highest in europe, and all hospitals around the eu (if not the whole world) face similar broblems in this period of financial crisis. I have worked in swiss and france. If you really want to be a doctor in search of financial rewards than the only place I can think of is….. well we all know.

  46. NHS leaver says:

    In my graduating class of 2010, 7 out of the top 25 ranked students have left medicine altogether. Some have gone into consulting, others into pharma. I can think of countless others who have emigrated/intend to emigrate abroad very soon.

    It doesn’t take a genius to realise that the fight for our own profession was lost many years ago. Our own colleagues betrayed the new generation and threw them to the dogs. No wonder the post MMC medic is nothing more than a slave ticking boxes in a stalinist gulag (the NHS).

    I for one made a decision to stop complaining and to leave. I left after CT1 for pharma and have not looked back. I get paid a salary on a consultant level 6 scale and with bonus/benefits am earning more than my NHS colleagues can ever expect to.

    Maybe this is what i’m worth. Free markets tend to reward based on value. I must say, the most priceless component of my job is never having to work nights/weekends/holidays ever again and not having to bow in shame to a jobsworth/penpusher/manager.

    Stop complaining and do something about your futures.

  47. Marginally Dissillusioned Doctor says:

    This thread is incredibly interesting particularly as it gives insight into the opinions of non-medics on doctors wages and lifestyle.

    I am starting CMT in August and am currently doing a locum post.

    I love medicine and I love my job…in the right circumstance. Namely a positive, supported environment that allows me to do what I came in to medicine to do- make people better and improve (and often save) their lives.

    I think there are two facets to the arguments above that are partially but not wholey intertwined. One is the current working environment for doctors (both those still in training and those in consultant posts) in the NHS and the the second is the earning and earning potential.

    There are many parts of my job that often make it (near) unbearable. Unbearable for me mainly as you see everyday care being delivered at a substandard level and a tangible change in the aim of everyone’s duties away from working in the patients best interest. And a horrible realisation that as a clinician there is very little to do to make things better!

    Most doctors don’t train to get showers of gold and an extravagant lifestyle. They do it as they get satisfaction from feeling like they are helping people. If you remove their ability to do this no amount of money will soothe them.

    With reservation I am continuing to persue a career in medicine. I do this with the clause to myself that I want to help make the NHS brilliant again and I am optimistic this can happen. I want a solid clinical grounding so when I get to a position where I can make a difference to how health care is provided I can do so with full insight.

    I feel privileged to be a doctor. Sometimes I’m not sure people on the outside can see what it’s really like- yesterday morning my day started with attempting to resuscitate someone then pronouncing them dead and having to tell the family and today I had to tell someone they had cancer that isn’t curable. I know I did these things well and despite the horrendousness of both situations know I did things to help people in a very grave time in their lives.

    I don’t want a gold medal. I don’t want a Bentley. I want recognition of my hard wiork and a reflective, fair and comparable (both between doctors (I’m sorry anyone who honestly believes GPs deserve more pay for less hours and no OOH commitment after only three years training are delusional) and other comparable professions) salary and an environment that supports, nourishes and acknowledges my skills. The NHS doesn’t provide me with this…yet.

    I suppose if that fails – what pharma company you working for NHS leaver?

  48. pjd says:

    I am a consultant nearing retirement. I am greatly in favour of the NHS in principle and (mainly and until the last few years) in practice. The problems are all due to lack of money, and the past failures of us as a profession to protect our interests. As far as salary goes I think we are well paid – there are no other professions (excluding banking and oil, sports stars etc) where large numbers of workers are guaranteed a 100K salary with a near-zero risk of redundancy or unemployment. If you do private practice (I don’t) in a large city you can easily earn 1m+. and (until recently) worked in an interesting and rewarding job with great public respect (not as much as in the past).
    The most important things which now make me consider early retirement are the EWTD for juniors, and lack of money to supply even basic levels of nursing staff to make the place function. The EWTD should never have been introduced without a compensating increase in the number of juniors. We are now in a position where because there is no continuity from junior staff, we consultants spend many hours doing junior admin tasks (chasing up referrals and results etc). Please note I am not suggesting we go back to the hours I worked as a junior). The lack of nursing staff (also poor IT etc etc) means we are constantly fire-fighting to maintrain a safe service – this also takes time and is very demoralising.
    I do not want more money personally, I want to be given the resources to do my job properly and give a good service to the public.
    The reason for these problems is that the NHS is chronically and grossly underfunded by the politicians who we, the general public vote for. What we should say to patients is – we all need to pay more for healthcare – whether this is in taxes to pay for the NHS, or insurance to pay for a private system doesn’t really matter.

  49. Q says:

    I totally Agree that these days severe shortages to cover acute medical take
    lack of interest of the hospital admin +GMC+NHS
    poor patient care
    poor salary scales
    people are leaving UK in need of better future
    learnt 150 doctors being imported from india for A&E due to shortages
    most junior and middle grades are working as locus via independent companies to meet both ends meet
    a tube driver makes more money than a middle grade doctor
    NHS and Govt sleeping…….

  50. Neil says:

    This is an interesting thread. Medical doctors are not the only ones qualified to that level…to train as a psychologist can take slightly longer, the pay is less yet the responsibility the same (I too can act as as an RMO equivalent and do offer diagnoses in relation to serious, life changing conditions). It is possible to get involved in the clinical leadeership in the NHS and it requires choosing to take an active role rather than passively letting it happen. Our last CEO was a medic by background, and although he had no skill at working with people and was pathologically narcissistic he had clearly got himself involved in the politics of management.

    The reality is that all staff in the NHS are underpaid given the responsibilities that they take one and the time they work. The training for me, too, also involves lifelong CPD, and to be fair, it should for any qualified professional in the service as we need to ensure we deliver up to date interventions. We all pay for this personally, to varying degrees, as there seems to be little consideration of this overhead, yet the same service would happily criticise any professional whose CPD was in sufficiently up to date.

    Finally, anyone who believes the NHS has not already become partially and will eventually become fully privatised is misleading themselves. For some bizarre reason our government thinks that privatising the NHS will lead to cost savings (yet if we compare the system to the US, the cost per head is significantly higher there, and access is much poorer, with a significant number of people not being able to access healthcare). More likely I suspect this is to ensure that politicians who have agreed such policy have suitable consulting contracts in leaving politics…? Most Trusts are now foundation Trusts and are effectively acting as businesses. Our own trust is seeking a mixed public private partnership! as part of a new arrangement! but other private providers are bidding for the same services.

    Anyway, amusing read, guess we will see where the whole process goes in the next few years, but unless we start valuing the healthcare we want, and paying for this properly in taxes rather than thinking it is someone else’s financial responsibility, we will quickly end up with a very tiered approach to healthcare.

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