The Royal College of Nursing has urged GP nurses to ensure they get the 6% pay rise announced by the Government earlier this month.
RCN, which is both a union and a professional body, said is ‘clear that salaried GP nursing staff should receive a pay rise of 6%’ in line with the full value of the pay uplift.
It said that the uplift ‘should be implemented as soon as possible’ and backdated to April 2023.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced earlier this month that NHS consultants, SAS doctors, salaried dentists and salaried GPs and staff would be covered by the pay offer, while junior doctors were offered a 6% pay rise plus £1,250.
GP partners were excluded, but the following day the Government announced that practices will get a funding uplift to cover the 6% pay rise for salaried GPs and other practice staff.
The uplift will be backdated to April and the Government said it expects the funding to be ‘passed on promptly to all general practice staff’.
However, how this translates to an increase of the global sum is currently subject to negotiation between the Department of Health and Social Care and GPCE, Pulse has been told.
The nurses’ union has created a letter template for practice nursing staff who have not had confirmation from their employer about the pay increase, to enable them to ‘seek clarification and receive their pay rise’.
RCN England Director Patricia Marquis said: ‘This pay award is recognition of your daily commitment to patients and the NHS.
‘We’re determined to ensure you receive your pay award promptly and in full and will support you to secure this if your employer does not guarantee it.
‘The fight for fair pay for nursing across all NHS and non-NHS settings continues. We have set our ambitions high and will be stepping up our campaign for the pay you deserve.’
Dr Steve Taylor, a GP in Manchester and GP spokesperson for the Doctors’ Association UK, told Pulse: ‘GP practices will be looking to pay their staff appropriately. The money to fund 6% pay increase has yet to be given to practices.
‘Given that the RCN know the government have been poor in their dealings with the NHS, it is disappointing that they have decided to put pressure on practices.
‘GP partners have not been included in the pay increase and will be taking another loss in income, as add ons like NI and pension are not included.
‘They remain restricted by a punitive contract with limited funding and increasing costs. A joint approach to Government would have been better, to force appropriate funding for all those working in Primary Care, and to safeguard the future of practices.’
When the offer was announced, the BMA said it was ‘another real-terms pay cut’ and warned that strikes would ‘likely’ continue, and that ‘other groups’ of doctors would also consider action.
The Government has said funding for the pay rises will need to come from existing NHS funding with DHSC and NHS England having to ‘reprioritise’.