1. ITV Report

Welsh doctors and dentists get bigger pay increase than those in England

Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire/PA Images

A new pay deal for doctors and dentists in Wales has been announced, giving higher increases than in England.

Health Secretary Vaughan Gething says the Welsh Government has agreed to accept in full recommendations of review bodies.

It means a 2% base increase for salaried doctors and dentists, salaried General Medical Practitioners and independent contractor GMPs and General Dental Practitioners, an additional 2% for independent contractor GMPs, and an additional 1.5% for Specialty and Associate Specialist doctors.

This pay rise, which will be backdated to 1 April 2018, recognises the value and dedication of hardworking doctors and dentists and their key contribution to the NHS in Wales.

This deal goes beyond what was agreed for doctors and dentists over the border and is yet another reason why Wales is a great place to train, work and live.

Following years of austerity, imposed by the UK Government, we have committed additional funding to fulfil the recommendations.

The reality remains, however, that our budgets are limited and so meeting a pay deal resulting from the lifting of the UK Government's pay cap without appropriate funding to follow presents a risk to the future funding of NHS Wales.

– Vaughan Gething AM, Health Secretary

The British Medical Association in Wales, the trade union for doctors, is welcoming the pay deal.

Whilst the DDRBs recommendations could have gone further to address many years of below inflation rises, doctors in Wales will be pleased that the Welsh Government has decided to implement the recommendations made by the independent panel.

At a time when the NHS is facing severe staff shortages across the UK, and doctors are having to manage unprecedented levels of demand, this announcement and the decision to backdate the pay award to April 2018, shows that the Welsh Government understands the value of doctors who are working tirelessly to improve and maintain the health of the people of Wales.

By following a different path to that taken in England the Cabinet Secretary has again shown that concrete steps are being taken to ensure Wales is an attractive place for doctors to work and will go some way towards addressing the recruitment and retention challenges we are facing.”

– Dr David Bailey, Chair, BMA’s welsh council

The Welsh Conservatives welcome the fact that a more generous salary is being given to those who dedicate their careers to helping others, and that the pay-rise has only been possible because of the UKConservative Government’s commitment to the NHS.

The Welsh Government still need to make it clear just how this offer is supposedly better than the settlement for NHS England, especially since the UK Government already announced their plans to honour the recommendations of the review that sparked this move back in July.

This announcement was long overdue and cynically kept on the back burner for Carwyn to get his applause at Conference and for Vaughan Gething to get a little boost for his leadership campaign.

Now that they have improved NHS staff pay, let’s hope that Welsh Labour overturn the habit of a lifetime and meet their A&E targets, stop making people wait hours for ambulances, reduce waiting times, and see Wales’ largest health board taken out of special measures.

– Welsh Conservative and Shadow Health Secretary Angela Burns AM

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