NHS pay scale for doctors in England

If you’re looking for information about NHS doctors’ salaries in England, there are several pay scales outlining nodal points, enhancements and experience. That’s why we’ve created a series of pay scale guides to help you find the right information and calculate your full NHS salary.  

For more information about NHS doctor salaries, read our guides on junior doctors’ pay scales in England and NHS consultant pay scales in England. 

Clinical fellow and trust doctor salary in England

Clinical fellows and trust doctors earn between £32,398 and £63,152 each year. These are doctors working in substantive or fixed-term contracts that are locally employed. The salary is similar to the junior doctor pay scale but simplified to 5 levels. It’s important to note that you need to provide evidence outlining the required years of experience to be assigned a nodal pay point. 

Local contracts appointment 
Years’ experience  Nodal point Basic salary (£) 
1 year foundation level  32,398 
2 years foundation level  37,303 
1+ years specialty registrar 43,923 
3+ years specialty registrar 55,329 
6+ years specialty registrar £63,152 

The above table outlines the base salary, but you will be eligible for enhancements based on the on-allowance, weekend allowance, additional hours and enhanced hours. For more information on these enhancements, read our junior doctors’ pay scales in England guide.

Ever wondered what it’s like to be a clinical fellow? Check out Dr Valeed Ghafoor’s guest blog to get an insight into the role.  

Specialty and specialist (SAS) doctor pay scale in England

Specialty doctor pay scale

Specialty doctors are paid a base salary between £52,530 and £82,400 per year. This pay scale is for experienced NHS SpR doctors in non-training posts. The salary on this pay scale represents 10 programmed activity (PA) sessions per week. Each PA is 4 hours, so this equates to a 40-hour working week.  

There are no enhancements on this pay scale, so the only way to increase your basic salary is to agree on additional PAs in your contract. You can then calculate your pro rata salary based on the pay scale and number of additional PAs agreed.  

Years’ experience Basic salary (£) 
0+ 52,530 
3+ 60,519 
6+ 67,465 
9+ 74,675 
12+ 82,400 

Specialist pay scale

Specialist (SAS) doctors, formerly known as associate specialists, are paid between £83,945 and £95,275 per year. This pay scale is designed for the most experienced doctors who are working equally to a consultant but do not have specialist registration.  

Years’ experience Basic salary (£) 
0+ 83,945 
3+ 89,610 
6+ 95,275 

For more information about consultant pay scales, view our guide to NHS consultant pay scales in England.

How much do NHS doctors get paid in the UK?

NHS doctors in the UK are paid a basic salary of £32,398 to £126,281. The salary depends on their years of experience, type of contract, pay scale and where they are located. It takes at least 28 years of experience to qualify for the top end of the pay scale.  

You may find that pay scales are different across the UK, as the NHS in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland set their pay scales independently. 

Basic pay is only one element of a doctor’s NHS salary. Depending on the pay scale, doctors may be eligible for enhancements including on-allowance, weekend allowance, additional hours, enhanced hours and additional PAs.  

While enhancements can impact a doctor’s salary by tens of thousands of pounds, they can significantly increase the number of hours.  

Working with Pulse

You go above and beyond, so we do too.  

If you’re a doctor looking for your next role, browse our available jobs or request a call back from Pulse to start your search. 

This article was originally written in January 2024 and relates to the NHS pay scales for 2023/2024. Pay scales are updated annually and this article will be updated again when the 2024/2025 NHS pay scales are announced.  

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