Dentists offered pay rise
Dentists in Scotland are among NHS staff who have been offered a 4.5 per cent pay rise this year by the Scottish Government
Dentists in Scotland are among NHS staff who have been offered a 4.5 per cent pay rise this year by the Scottish Government.
The offer, which also includes GPs, has been defended by Health Secretary Humza Yousaf but attacked by others involved with the NHS.
Mr Yousaf said the award “demonstrates that we value all our medical and dental staff and the important contribution they make”.
However, British Medical Association (BMA) Scotland chairman Dr Lewis Morrison said rising inflation meant in reality it was a “large real-terms pay cut”.
The pay award, which will be backdated to the beginning of April, follows the acceptance by the Scottish Government of the recommendation of the independent Doctors’ and Dentists’ Pay Review Body (DDRB).
Mr Yousaf said staff in the NHS had been under increased pressure as a result of the pandemic but had worked tirelessly to provide care. He added. “It’s crucial that we continue to not only recruit and build our future NHS workforce, but also retain expertise within NHS Scotland.”
The Health Secretary continued: “This announcement means that our senior medical staff will continue to be the best paid in the UK. This will help ensure that NHS Scotland remains an attractive employment option for all medical and dental staff.”
The government pointed out that the award was in addition to a pay increase last year of 3 per cent meaning staff will have had a total rise of 7.5 per cent over two years.
However, prices are currently increasing at their fastest rate for 40 years. The Consumer Prices Index (CPI) rose by 9.4 per cent in the 12 months to June – an increase from 9.1 per cent in May.
The Bank of England, which sets monetary policy, has said that inflation could increase to more than 11 per cent later this year.
The BMA Scotland claim that the deal did nothing to undo years of real-term pay erosion.
Dr Morrison added: “The Scottish Government has to reflect on how it really values and treats our medical workforce if it genuinely wants to ensure NHS recovery and a future of healthcare in Scotland that will meet the needs of its people.
“In response to this hugely disappointing award we will be urgently consulting our members to gauge their views, and what steps we may take as a result.”
Some 160,000 other NHS staff, including nurses, paramedics, and healthcare support staff, are being balloted on a pay offer of 5 per cent. Eligible doctors and dentists in England will get a similar pay rise to that offered in Scotland.