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NHS 3 year pay reform framework agreement released

21/03/2018 14:49:41

Today, 21st March, at an extraordinary meeting of NHS Staff Council, unions and employers agreed to consult their memberships on the final version of a 3 year pay deal reforming the Agenda for Change pay structure. The key elements of this “Framework Agreement” are:

  • Major increases for staff below top of band through simplifying bands so most staff reach the full rate for the job quicker – worth between 9% and 29% over three years
  • Meaningful increases for top-of- band staff who already benefit from the full rate for the job – for most this would be worth 6.5% over three years plus a 1.1% lump sum( in 2019)
  • Big improvements to starting salaries to help the NHS attract and retain new staff
  • Removal of band overlaps to ensure promotion comes with a proper pay rise, and to lessen the risk of equal pay challenges
  • Ending poverty pay through an immediate move to a new above- living wage minimum rate, with further increases for the lowest paid staff by the end of the deal.

Contrary to speculative reports over the weekend of 17th March there is no change to annual leave.

The Secretary of State reported today in a statement to the House of Commons that the NHS has been allocated an additional £4.2bn over three years to fund the deal.

The details of the deal and how they will impact on you are complex. Each current pay point will have its own “pay journey” over the 3 years towards the new trimmed pay scales with faster progression to top of band (for bands 2-7). We will produce more material to help your understanding of the deal over the next few days and weeks. Meanwhile for more detail and a pay journey calculator please go to the joint unions web site: . Note that the projected pay points on the calculator are achieved in 2 steps: cost of living increase and a “restructuring” increase on 1st April each year and a pay progression increase on your normal incremental date.



The consultation will be in several phases:

1.       March & April – Understanding the deal.

2.       May – gathering your views.

3.       June - Feedback by all unions of the outcome to Staff Council.

If the deal is accepted the pay should be in pay slips by end of July followed by backdating to April.

Attached are:

1.       A copy of the press release from 21-03-2018

2.       The text of the Framework Agreement.

pdf Image Press release - Proposed NHS pay agreement (England)

pdf Image Framework agreement for proposed reform to AfC

pdf Image NHS 3 year framework agreement - joint unions leaflet

Geoff Lester
FCS Representative to NHS Staff Council.

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