how much does a nurse earn in the uk? nursing salaries in the uk, nhs banding system, agenda for change, nhs new pay deal, nurse banding

How much does a nurse earn in the UK?

By Paul Hayward

​How much a nurse can expect to earn in the UK is highly dependent on experience, length of service and qualifications. Few jobs carry such a broad range of salary ‘banding’. There are requirements you must meet before you can relocate to become nurse in the UK.

Nurse banding

Nursing bands are determined by qualifications and experience. Newly qualified nurses start at the bottom at band 5, regardless of what they specialise in. There are plenty of opportunities to progress through the bands.

The bands are:

  • Band 5 – Newly qualified nurse

  • Band 6 – Nursing specialist or senior nurse

  • Band 7 – Advanced nurse or nurse practitioner

  • Band 8 – Modern matron or chief nurse

  • Band 9 – Consultant

To see nursing salaries broken down by band, take a look at the NHS Pay Table. Or find out more about the full-time working hours.

Agenda for change

This is the national pay system for all NHS staff except for doctors, dentists and senior managers. It was introduced in 2004 to support the banding structure and provides a more structured way to ensure that NHS staff are being paid fairly and equally for the work that they do. Find out more about the benefits you get working for the NHS.

New Pay Deal

From 1 April 2018, the New Pay Deal, agreed by NHS employers and unions, started a three-year process where nurses’ minimum salaries would increase by 6.5-22%, based on length of service and where in the pay band each nurse sat. This meant that a band 5 nurse who just started out, got a 22% increase in basic pay over three years, and that a band 5 nurse with two years’ experience saw a 16% increase over the same period. For those at the top of the pay band, they received a 6.5% increase. To find out more, explore the NHS New Pay Deal calculator.

For more information about NHS careers, read our collection of blogs.