NHS pay in Wales 2022-24

The latest on the status of the 2022-23 and 2023-24 pay deal in Wales.

What has happened with 2022-24 pay?

In July 2022, the Welsh Government implemented a pay award for NHS staff in Wales for 2022-23 of £1,400, based on the Pay Review Body's recommendations. Our members rejected this award, and CSP members in Wales voted emphatically to take strike action for fair pay in February. 

The threat of CSP members taking strike action brought the Welsh Government back to the negotiating table. Joint trade union negotiators secured an improved pay offer of a 3 per cent uplift, 1.5 percentage points of which was consolidated. CSP members accepted this uplifted offer in a consultation survey in February 2023.

However, it was only narrowly accepted at a vote of the joint trade unions in Wales. Shortly after this the UK government announced a revised England NHS pay offer for 2022-24, following strike action by the CSP and other health unions.  As a result of these factors, trade unions in Wales succeeded in negotiating a further uplift to the 2022-23 pay offer accepted by members. 

This has been combined with a new pay offer for 2023-24. We have consulted members in Wales who voted emphatically to accept this new and improved pay offer for 2022-23 and 2023-24.

There was a vote of the joint Trade Unions of the Welsh Partnership forum, which collectively accepted the pay deal and Welsh Government have announced they will be implementing the new pay offer as soon as is practicable.

Next steps

Welsh Government and NHS Employers will now move to implement the deal. The non-consolidated recovery payment should be paid in June's pay packets. The 5% salary uplift should be applied in time for July's salary, however, the back payment to April 2023 maybe delayed until August's pay packet.

What the deal includes

Members will receive a single package, which includes:

  • A one-off lump sum payment, equivalent to 3 per cent of the NHS pay bill in Wales. This is  additional to the 1.5 per cent non-consolidated lump sum that was paid in March 2023 pay packets. The amount you will receive will be dependent on your band:  Bands 1 to 4 will receive £900;   Bands 5 to 8a, £1,005;  Bands 8b to 8c, £1,050;  Band 8d, £1,100 ; and Band 9, £1,190.
  • A consolidated pay rise of 5 per cent for most Agenda for Change staff for 2023-24, plus an additional payment to lower band staff to bring them significantly above the Real Living Wage rate. This is a consolidated offer, and would be based on 2022-23 salary scales as they stood after the £1,400+ award based on the Pay Review Body's recommendations, and the 1.5 per cent consolidated uplift achieved through previous negotiations.
  • A commitment from the Welsh government to work in social partnership on a number of non-pay elements. These include, but are not limited to commitments to:
    • the principle of pay restoration to 2008 levels
    • discuss the pay award in Wales if consequential funding comes to Wales from the UK Government
    • reinstate unsocial hours allowance after 1 week of sickness absence
    • implement an all-Wales policy on Flexible Working, with the default position of acceptance
    • explore a reduction of the working week for Agenda for Change staff with the aim of moving to a 36 hour working week without loss of earnings
    • ensure employers enable time off for CPD

What the deal means for your salary

Find out more

Frequently asked questions

The offer will mean different things to our members depending on their circumstances and pay bands. Check how the pay offer relates to your pay band in the links provided above.

The most common queries are set out below. If your question isn’t answered you can contact paywales@csp.org.uk or speak to your steward or rep.

Pay negotiations and consultation process

We have already had an offer for 22-23 accepted, how is this different?

The Welsh Government has worked in social partnership to negotiate and agree a pay deal at an earlier stage than the UK Government. As a result, trade unions negotiated and agreed a 3 per cent uplift in February 2023, of which 1.5 percentage points were consolidated. The 1.5 per cent non-consolidated element was paid in March; and the consolidated amount paid in May 2023, backdated to April 2022.

As a result of the UK Government reaching an agreed offer with trade unions in England, the Welsh government came back to the table to discuss an uplift to the 2022-23 pay deal and to negotiate and agree an offer for the 2023-24 pay year. This is what we are consulting on as a single package.

How would the proposed pay offer be funded?

The UK Government have not yet committed to providing consequential funding to Wales if the England deal gets accepted. The only commitment that ministers have made is that consequential funding will flow in the normal way.

Therefore, the Welsh government has committed to this offer without receiving additional funding from UK Government. The Welsh government could not categorically state that services would not suffer if consequential funding did not come from the UK government. Therefore, it is imperative that any offer that is agreed in England, comes with funding to ensure that services are maintained in Wales.

Why are the pay offers different in other UK nations?

The CSP believes that physiotherapy is a UK-wide profession and that NHS pay should be the same, wherever members work within the UK. However, the reality is that devolved governments are free to offer NHS staff higher pay if they choose to do so. This has led to an increasing divergence across the UK over several years, with notably higher NHS pay in Scotland, despite members there paying more income tax.

The different political dimensions in Scotland with an SNP-led government and in Wales where there is a Labour-led government underlies the divergence, with both governments stating a proactive commitment to working in partnership with trade unions on pay and to supporting public services as a high priority.

This led to both Scottish and Welsh governments opening talks with health unions before any industrial action was taken and working in partnership to reach a revised offer. The government in Westminster allowed four months of strikes before even entering talks.

I have heard there are concerns about a separate pay scale for nursing in England. Is this happening in Wales?

An offer from the Secretary of State in England has been made to the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) to explore the feasibility of separate pay arrangements for nurses. This has caused understandable concern for CSP members.

This is NOT part of the pay offer and not included in what you will be invited to vote on. The other 13 unions covered by Agenda for Change, including the CSP, do not support the proposals. We believe there are significant legal and industrial barriers to separate pay arrangements and also that this would be undesirable and unnecessary. We will continue to work with fellow unions to make our view clear as the exploratory discussions proceed in the coming months.

Prior to the recent joint union talks, the RCN and government held separate pay discussions, and we understand this proposal was raised during those. Other unions were not made aware of this but, when they did become aware partway through the talks, the joint negotiating team worked to ensure it was entirely separated from the pay offer.

It is the CSP’s view that Agenda for Change is founded on a single, harmonised, equality-proofed grading and pay system, alongside harmonised terms and conditions. It enshrines equal pay for work of equal value and has stood the NHS in good stead for two decades despite some inevitable imperfections, which can be addressed within the current system.

We all want nursing colleagues to be fairly, equitably and fully recognised, paid and rewarded for the vital role they play. The current system is broad enough to reflect the changing nature of healthcare jobs through new job profiles; full job analysis of very specialist roles; Recruitment and Retention Premia (RRPs); and other options open to all AfC staff.

The NHS is one workforce, one team and is stronger together.

The non-consolidated pay offer 2022-23

Will the additional 2022-23 non-consolidated pay offers be subject to tax and pension contributions?

The non-consolidated payments will not be pensionable and will therefore not count towards pension tiers and your employee pension contributions will not be deducted from the payments if you are a member of the NHS pension scheme.

The two parts of the non-consolidated payments will be paid as one lump sum payment and will be subject to tax and national insurance (NI) deductions, as required by normal HMRC rules.

Why does the 2022-23 offer not apply the same percentage bonus across all bands?

Welsh Government made 3 per cent of the NHS 22-23 total wage bill available to agree an uplift to the payments in 2022-23. It has been distributed at slightly different rates for different pay points as follows;

  • Band 1 to 4 £900
  • Band 5 to 8a £1,005
  • Band 8b to 8c £1,050
  • Band 8d £1,100
  • Band 9 £1,190

The 2023-24 payment offer is a straight percentage uplift across all pay points, recognising the need to ensure higher paid staff receive the same percentage uplift, particularly having received a lower percentage in 2022-23 when the Pay Review Body recommended a flat rate rise (the £1400 award).

Who is eligible for the non-consolidated payment?

The non-consolidated payments will apply to staff directly employed by the NHS after 1 April 2022. The payment will be based on contracted hours across 2022-23. Payroll will then pick up any changes in pay bands and moves between part time and full time hours and the non-consolidated payment will be adjusted accordingly.

Only staff employed by the NHS after 1 April 2022 will be eligible. If you have left the NHS between 1 April 2022 and the date of payment, you will receive a pro-rata amount of the payment for how much of the 22-23 pay year you worked.

Will the one-off payments be worked out pro-rata?

Yes, they will be pro-rata for part-time staff.

Will I be entitled to the non-consolidated payment if I have been on maternity/paternity/adoption leave?

Staff on maternity/parental/adoption leave remain employed and are therefore eligible to receive the non-consolidated payments.

What if I have changed employer during the year?

Payroll are looking across the whole pay year for the non-consolidated amount for 22-23, therefore different employers will pay the relevant parts of the non-consolidated amount.

What if I have changed band or hours during 2022-23

Payroll will pick up any changes in pay bands and/or changes between part time and full time hours and the non-consolidated payment will be adjusted accordingly.

Will bank staff receive the non-consolidated payments?

The pay, terms and conditions arrangements for bank staff across the NHS vary considerably. The non-consolidated payments will be made to bank staff. The consolidated uplift in salary will also be made to bank staff salaries.

I am on a career break. Will I be entitled to receive the non-consolidated payment?

This will be for local employers to determine on a case-by-case basis. We would therefore advise you speak to your local steward in the first instance.

I undertake NHS work but I am not directly employed by the NHS. Will I receive this payment?

The pay, terms and conditions for staff working for outside the NHS, even when delivering NHS services, varies considerably. It will depend on your individual employment contract as to whether you are likely to have a contractual entitlement to all or any parts of the offer. A contract that sets out an entitlement to Agenda for Change pay, terms and conditions with a clear commitment to implementing all national uplifts and changes is likely to lead to a contractual entitlement.

Consolidated pay offer- 2023-24

Is the consolidated payment pensionable?

Yes. The consolidated uplift is pensionable and will form part of an individual’s pensionable earning.

When will staff receive the payment?

The non-consolidated recovery payment should be paid in June's pay packets. The 5% salary uplift should be applied in time for July's salary, however, the back payment to April 2023 maybe delayed until August's pay packet.

Who is eligible for the 2023-24 consolidated payment?

The consolidated amount for 2023-24 will be paid to those members directly employed by the NHS under Agenda for Change contracts from 1st April 2023 onwards. If you have left the NHS between 1st April 2023 and the implementation date of the award, you will receive a payment backdated to 1st April 2023. If you have moved employers during this same period, you will receive the backdated amount for the relevant periods from each employer.

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