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Independents' Day

GP partner earnings 'increased by almost 2%', Government statistics claim

GP partner earnings increased by nearly 2% in 2014/15 to £101,500, official Government statistics have indicated.

However, today’s data publication from NHS Digital says the income of salaried GPs went down during the year, by almost 2% to £53,600.

GP leaders warn that the overall increase in partner earnings reflect the decrease in GP numbers, meaning that the partners left are having to do more work for the same pay.

The data shows:

  • GP partners had an average income of £101,500 in 2014/15.  This is an increase of 1.7% on their income of £99,800 in 2013-14;
  • The average income for all GPs (including partners and salaried) was £90,600, only a slight change on the previous year’s figure of £90,200;
  • GPs working in a GMS practice had an average income of £98,000 compared with £96,000 in 2013/14 - a 2.1% increase;
  • GPs working in a PMS practice had an average income of £108,000 compared with £106,800 in 2013/14 - a 1.2% increase;
  • The average income for salaried GPs in the UK in 2014/15 was £53,600 - a decrease of 1.7% on the 2013/14 figure of £54,600 in 2013/14.  

The report says that GMS and PMS GP partner gross earnings were, on average, £283,300 in 2014/15, up 3.6% from the year before, while the average total expenses were £181,800 - an increase of 4.6%.

The proportion of gross earnings taken up by expenses increased by 0.7 percentage points to 64.2%.

Broken down by country:

  • English GP partners saw a 1.9% increase in income before tax;
  • Scottish GP partners saw a 1.1% increase;
  • Welsh GP partners saw a decrease of 0.3%;
  • Northern Irish GP partners saw a 2.1% increase.

Dr Robert Morley, GPC contracts and regulation subcommittee chair, said: ’The figures may be accurate but any increase in partner earnings simply reflects the fact that there is a decrease in the number of partners out there and workloads are going up.

’If the number of GP partners had remained static we would have seen a massive decrease in profits.

‘The issues determining partner profit are hugely complex, there are so many variables but again, any increase will not even get close to offsetting the massive increase in workload and stress that partners are facing.’

The data takes into account all medical income, including both NHS and private work, and is before employers’ superannuation costs - as well as CQC fees, GMC fees and the like - are taken into account.

A GPC spokesperson said: 'The figures for contractor GPs show a very marginal average increase that is unlikely to be felt by many GPs. It comes after a decade of falling GP contractor income which has been squeezed by rising practice expenses and inflation at the same time as GP workload has spiralled to unmanageable land unsafe levels.

’The figures relating to salaried GPs need to be interpreted with caution as this report does not make adjustments for any change in the average number of hours worked by the GPs in the cohort included compared with previous years. GPC is not aware of any salaried GPs who have made no changes to their working arrangements but experienced a reduction in their pay.’


Readers' comments (33)

  • Still comparing apples with pears. If anything locally salaried GP incomes are going up as well as having their MDU/ MPS fees paid by practices.

    The term gross income for partners is misleading as it implies that this is the 'personal GP income' before tax when it is actually practice income before expenses and overheads are taken out.

    Once practice expenses are removed from the 'gross' figure what is left is the partnership profit which equates to £101,500 per year (per partner).

    You must deduct the partner's employer's NHS contribution which 14.9% which leaves £86, 376 as the average partner's gross pay that can be compared to a salaried GP's gross pay.

    Consider that partners pay their own MDP/MPS/MDDUS fees out of their profits (with 40% claimed back for tax) and the £86k goes down further when compared to a salaried job.

    For the financial and clinical risk (as well as the stress and effect on family life)... I'm not sure it's worth it.

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  • The above never seems to be mentioned or understood. 100,000 = about 800000 to a GP partner.
    Good news at least not dropped again.

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  • also assume this is per full time partner? many partners will work less to manage the workload. I had to drop to 3.5 (clinical) days and still work a full time week to deal with all the admin......(which salaried drs won't touch)

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  • why does figure not come after removal of MDO fees (up 10-20%), 30% of their contributions to the pensions, and increased working hours of 12 hours+ a day. Totally misleading, but this is going to be used to ensure we don't any further pay rises.

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  • We use a specialist firm of medical accountants that provide their services to a hundred or more practices - they tell us that, like almost every other practice they deal with, partnership earnings continue to fall because of rising expenses and stagnant income.
    It's not comparing like-for-like though, because workload continues to rise inexorably. If GP income was benchmarked against activity, it would clearly show a dramatic fall over recent years.

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  • Thanks mr hunt . we will beat bill gates soon

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  • Blunt calculations presenting blunt figures
    Totally agree that gross figures are totally misleading
    This says nothing just aims to expose and aggravate.

    If you want to look at the reality offset this apparent increase against the increase in expenses for that period and this will give you a crude gross profit which is more real... It is in the article but again the differential will be negative in many practices. And is it that primary care has had to cut back so hard to generate this percentage increase against a tsunami of costs and demand/expectation.
    Then you are getting closer to where the liquidity and revenue level really sits.

    Not only that the distribution of earnings is not a simple curve when comparing practices and an average figure with this kind of curve is misleading.

    Also the figures would be skewed by some very high earning individuals and a small number of primary care organsiations - some of the federations and vanguards may be flexing and stretching the figures - I don't know.

    You need to go to a primary care dedicated accountancy firm for the true figures because they see it as it is - try Ramsay Brown to get the real figures for what GPs actually take home to live their lives. And you know what GPs deserve better lives at home against the onslaught of their working lives.

    Anyway... I am now out of general practice and watch in disgust from the sidelines as my beloved profession is slated, abused, hung, drawn and quartered. The dear gem that was general practice is being dealt with as if it is a naughty child who needs to be told off. A naughty child that does not appreciate the toys it has been given and the way to chastise it is to expose and embarrass it in front of the family, friends and neighbours.
    There is a diminishing family, there are less friends and the neighbours are moving away...

    Shame on England, shame on the NHS, shame on a few key politicians who, unlike the junior doctors and GPs who are trying to save lives, are in part to blame for the demise of the NHS. Where are the mortality and morbidity statistics against the decisions they have made?
    What kind of pay increase have they had?

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  • Pulse needs to balance this with the increased INDEMNITY costs - this alone will eat up any of this, and real terms pay has reduced.

    Please start tempering the headlines with the reality.

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  • Vinci Ho

    Don't get too uptight , folks. We have these figures all the time , good for GP battling from Ministry of Truth and Plenty. The more reliable figures are certainly coming from medical accountants and their professional bodies .
    Let's presume these figures were correct in the eyes of the layman people , the common sense should be a lot more qualified doctors would flock in to become partners and the existing partners would prefer to stay on if this difference in incomes matters so much . Why is the real time picture completely opposite to this ?
    The truth is still out there. No need to defend for ourselves .

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  • £53,600 for a salaried GP... is this take home after tax and pension?

    I am really, really confused.

    Here are job adverts for places that are struggling to recruit salaried GPs at £80-90k

    The ones that can recruit pay above this.

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