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Pay rise for nurses would boost wider economy, report says

RCN welcomes ‘compelling argument’ in policy and economics consultancy report supporting nurses’ pay rise
Picture shows piles of £1 coins and assorted UK bank notes.

RCN welcomes compelling argument in policy and economics consultancy report supporting nurses pay rise

Giving nurses and other NHS staff a long overdue pay rise of up to 10% would boost recruitment and retention as well as benefiting the wider economy, according to a report by a policy and economics consultancy.

If nurses and other NHS staff on Agenda for Change (AfC) contracts in England had a pay rise of 5% or 10% they would pay more tax and clear student loans sooner, according to the report by London Economics .

RCN welcomes ‘compelling argument’ in policy and economics consultancy report supporting nurses’ pay rise

Picture shows piles of £1 coins and assorted UK bank notes.
Picture: iStock

Giving nurses and other NHS staff a ‘long overdue’ pay rise of up to 10% would boost recruitment and retention as well as benefiting the wider economy, according to a report by a policy and economics consultancy.

If nurses and other NHS staff on Agenda for Change (AfC) contracts in England had a pay rise of 5% or 10% they would pay more tax and clear student loans sooner, according to the report by London Economics.

Higher salaries would also mean staff would have more money to spend in the private sector, which is currently being supported by the government during the COVID-19 pandemic, and make the profession a more appealing prospect, the report added.

Pay increases would result in increased disposable income

‘Pay increases for nurses, midwives, allied health professionals and NHS support staff are long overdue, and will result in increased disposable income circulating throughout the economy,’ the report said.

Earlier this week, health unions urged prime minister Boris Johnson to speed up the process of determining a pay rise for nurses and other NHS staff at risk of burnout from the COVID-19 crisis.

The government delayed a decision on a pay rise for nurses and other NHS staff on AfC contracts until at least May, even though the current three-year pay deal expires in March.

Compelling argument for a pay rise for nurses

RCN general secretary Dame Donna Kinnair said the London Economics report made a compelling argument for a pay rise for nurses.

‘Not only is it genuinely affordable for the government, but the major economic boost is one we all want to see,’ she said.

‘The figures speak for themselves – the real cost to the Treasury of doing this would be a fraction of the money paid out at the outset and deliver huge benefits to the NHS, in terms of much-needed recruitment and better retention.’

Find out more

London Economics (2021) The Net Exchequer Impact of Increasing Pay for Agenda for Change Staff


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