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Practice manager pay rises by more than 2% despite bonus cuts

By Ian Quinn

GPs are paying practice managers on average just over 2% more than last year, a survey has found.

It shows nearly half of all practice managers now earn more than £40,000 a year, although there are big gaps depending on location and practice size.

Greater London remains the top-paying region of the UK, with average total earnings of £40,550, and 49% of practice managers on over £40,000.

In smaller practices with less than 5,000 patients, the average manager's income is now £30,919, compared to £29,875 in 2008, while for the largest practices, with more than 14,000 patients, it has risen from £44678 in 2008 to £44969.

Overall basic pay of managers rose on average by 2.77% this year but the level of bonuses paid reduced by 26% - the fourth successive year of bonus reduction in the survey and following a 17% reduction in 2008.

Bonuses in 2009 represent just 1.5% of practice managers' income- on average £579.

Greater London pays the highest average bonuses, at £905, while the South West region pays the lowest on average at £377.

More than 1,350 managers responded from across the UK responded to the survey by First Practice Management.

Analyst Steve Morris said: ‘The financial slow-down in GP practices which started to bite last year has rolled forward into 2009, and the number of practices not paying a QOF or other target performance bonus to managers has risen again, from 55% in 2007, to 61% in 2008, and now to 68% in 2009.

‘It is not only bonus payments which are affected, as a small number of practices have commented that there is to be no pay increase for their staff this year – and some of these are large practices.'

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