NHS pay difference shows how vital Scotland’s decision making powers are


Figures showing that nurses and auxiliary staff in Scotland’s NHS get a better deal than in NHS England have underlined the importance of Scotland being able to make its own choices.

A Scottish Parliament Written Answer – additionally confirmed by SPICE – has revealed that a typically paid nurse in Scotland will earn £23,363 in April 2015, compared to £22,903 in England, a difference of £460.

Further confirming the fact that NHS staff get a better deal in Scotland the Written Answer also reveals that the lowest paid NHS staff in Scotland will earn £1,064 more than their counterparts in England, in part due to the application of the Living Wage in Scotland. Posts in these bands include; auxiliary nurses, domestic assistants and administrative staff.

Welcoming these findings SNP MSP Aileen McLeod, who asked the Question and is a member of the Health and Sport Committee, said:

“These are encouraging figures confirming that Scotland’s National Health Service is in good hands.

“With better paid nurses and better paid vital auxiliary staff than south of the border we can take confidence and pride in the fact that NHS Scotland is well placed to ensure that people receive the highest standard of care possible.

“Meanwhile NHS Scotland has more nurses per head of population and is outperforming its counterparts south of the border when it comes to waiting times for the kind of common procedures that most patients need.

“By having full responsibility for health we have been able to protect the NHS in Scotland from the deeply damaging privatisation agenda that is undermining services south of the border.

“It is one of the clearest demonstrations possible that where decisions are made in Scotland, they reflect the priorities of people living here.

“With a Yes vote in September, it will be people in Scotland that are ultimately responsible for every decision affecting Scotland – not a Westminster system that has long since shown itself to be at odds with Scotland’s needs.”


The Parliamentary Question showing comparison between NHS nurses and staff pay in Scotland and England

See additional note from SPICE attached for key figures.

Further notes:

The Parliamentary Question showing that there are more nurses per head of population in NHS Scotland can be viewed at

The Parliamentary Question showing that NHS Scotland’s waiting times on common procedures is lower than that of England or Wales can be viewed at

NHS workers threaten action as UK gov refuses pay rise:

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doc icon SPICE-additional-info.docx