The British Medical Association (BMA) has announced that GPs in England will receive a one per cent pay rise, along with a number of other benefits.
The news came following the completion of negotiations over the terms of the 2018/19 contract, which saw the promise of an additional £256 million worth of investment.
The agreement was reached with NHS England and included:
- £256 million overall investment
- One per cent pay rise
- 3 per cent uplift to expenses
- £60 million to support GPs with the costs of medical indemnity
- £10 million to support an e-referral service roll out.
The one per cent increase comes into effect on 1 April, although the BMA is anticipating that this figure will rise once the Government has received a forthcoming report into doctors’ pay currently being compiled by the Doctors and Dentists Review Body (DDRB). For that report, the BMA recommended a 2 per cent pay rise on top of the measure of inflation in the retail prices index (RPI).
The GPs’ committee chair for the BMA, Richard Vautrey, welcomed the increase in investment but also highlighted the work still needed to improve general practice in England. Commenting on the agreement, Dr Vautrey said: “For too long, GP pay has been in decline, despite working harder than ever to deliver more appointments in an increasingly under-pressure NHS.
“From the outset of these negotiations we have been resolute that we would not accept a 1 per cent uplift for pay and expenses, but made it clear that after a decade of pay cuts, it is time GPs and their staff received a proper pay increase.”
He concluded: “While these changes are a further step in the right direction, and build on the important improvements last year, what is urgently needed is for the Government to continue to work with the BMA to provide general practice with the proper funding and support it needs to guarantee the future of the profession and ensure safe and high-quality care to patients.”
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