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  • 13 November 2023
  • 3 min read

A Nurse’s Guide To NHS Pay Bands In 2024

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    • Emanuele D'amico
    • Mat Martin
    • Matt Farrah
    • Aisha Seidu Peligah
    • Vanessa Mantebea Opoku
    • Laura Bosworth
  • 8
  • 677727
A brief guide to the pay on offer in each banding according to the most recent updatesA brief guide to the pay on offer in each banding according to the most recent updates

If you’ve ever wondered how the NHS pay bands compare with one another, here is a brief guide to how your responsibilities will change, along with your pay.

Topics covered in this article

NHS pay for Nurses is structured around different bandings

Band 5 salaries and roles

Band 6 salaries and roles

Band 7 salaries and roles

Bands 8 and 9

What will you earn?

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NHS pay for Nurses is structured around different bandings

Newly qualified, NMC registered nurses start at Band 5, and the most qualified and experienced nursing consultants and specialists can climb all the way to the uppermost pay band, which is band 9.

Guide To NHS Pay Bands

Within each banding, different levels of NHS pay are on offer according to experience.

And movement between bandings can come with enough experience and further study, allowing nurses to apply for more senior roles.

Here’s a complete guide to the pay on offer within each banding, and the typical job titles found within each banding.

Band 5 salaries and roles

Band 5 nursing roles apply to newly qualified Nurses.

The current starting salary for a Band 5 Nurse is £28,407.

With 2-4 years’ experience, a Band 5 Nurse will earn £30,639, and the very top of this banding pays £32,934.

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Band 6 salaries and roles

Band 6 Nursing roles typically include Senior Nurses, Deputy Ward Managers, Health Visitors and various specialist Nurses.

Band 6 roles start at £35,392, and rise to £42,618 for nurses with more than 5 years of experience.

It’s important to note that all roles at Band 6 and above will require increasingly specialised skills, qualifications and experience.

Band 7 salaries and roles

Band 7 nursing roles include Ward Managers, Emergency Nurse Practitioners and clinical specialists.

Band 7 roles start at £43,742 and rise to £50,056 for anyone with more than 5 years of experience.

At this level, it’s likely that highly specialised knowledge will be essential for securing a position – which will probably come from a Master’s degree.

Experience is vital too, as Band 7 roles tend to come with a great deal of responsibility.

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Bands 8 and 9

At the very top of NHS nursing banding there are only a few types of roles that qualify.

Band 8 and 9 roles normally only apply to Modern Matrons, Chief Nurses and Consultants.

Band 8a roles start at £50,952, but at Band 8d, can rise to £96,376 a year.

Meanwhile, Band 9 roles start at £99,891, and rise to more than £114,949 a year with 5 years or more experience.

At this level, your role is increasingly consultative.

You’re an expert in your field, and you help to educate others.

What will you earn?

If you’re looking to start a career as a Nurse or move into a new role in a higher banding, you can work out exactly what you’ll earn in the NHS (and take home after tax and pension deductions) using our handy NHS pay calculator.

About the author

I believe people working in healthcare should be able to choose to enjoy work. That is, choose an employer who reflects their values and provides them with a sustainable career. This leads to better patient care, higher retention rates and happier working lives in this most important employment sector.

    • Emanuele D'amico
    • Mat Martin
    • Matt Farrah
    • Aisha Seidu Peligah
    • Vanessa Mantebea Opoku
    • Laura Bosworth
  • 8
  • 677727

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    • Janet Dalton one year ago
      Janet Dalton
    • Janet Dalton
      one year ago

      You would still start at band 5 with an MSc as you require at least 12 months' experience before moving ... read more

    • Chris Sutton one year ago
      Chris Sutton
    • Chris Sutton
      one year ago

      I understand newly qualified nurses start at Band 5. Is this the same for a BSc and MSc? I have ... read more

      • Hi Chris. In case you don't get alerted, Janet Dalton has posted(above)this answer to your question: You would still start at band 5 with an MSc as you require at least 12 months' experience before mo... read more

        Hi Chris. In case you don't get alerted, Janet Dalton has posted(above)this answer to your question: You would still start at band 5 with an MSc as you require at least 12 months' experience before moving to a band 6. But, as some band 6 roles will require an MSc or may ask you to study for one while in the role having one already may give you an advantage. Another thing to consider might be the added intensity of a qualification done over two years rather than the steadier degree done over 3 years. But if you feel you could manage that, you would have a higher qualification in a shorter time frame. Good luck with it Chris, whatever you decide
        read less

        Replied by: Matt Farrah
    • Colm B one year ago
      Colm B
    • Colm B
      one year ago

      What band can a nurse with 18 years experience in the States expect to start at ?

      • Hi Colm. We're not completely sure. But here are our thoughts. Firstly, of course, you would need a PIN. Then, we would say a Band 6 would be a good start. Plenty of UK nurses have been in the NHS for... read more

        Hi Colm. We're not completely sure. But here are our thoughts. Firstly, of course, you would need a PIN. Then, we would say a Band 6 would be a good start. Plenty of UK nurses have been in the NHS for 20 plus years and are happy working at Band 6. If they have Leadership and Management skills then they may work at Band 7 - but they would need to integrate their skills.
        read less

        Replied by: Matt Farrah

        Hi Colm. I just chatted to another colleague here. She said, "Well that will depend on his level of qualifications as band levels are set by a mix of quals and experience. For instance, Trusts expect ... read more

        Hi Colm. I just chatted to another colleague here. She said, "Well that will depend on his level of qualifications as band levels are set by a mix of quals and experience. For instance, Trusts expect a degree now for certain bands regardless of experience. I would suggest getting in touch with Trusts directly to discuss."
        read less

        Replied by: Matt Farrah
    • John Y one year ago
      John Y
    • John Y
      one year ago

      Hello Matt, if this is true, does this means that my trust owes me some pay back? when did it ... read more

      • This isn't something we can answer John. It sounds like you've started / tried to talk to your employer. That's the route you need to take.

        Replied by: Matt Farrah
    • Jim Mainland one year ago
      Jim Mainland
    • Jim Mainland
      one year ago

      Why no mention whatsoever of the fact that the same pay bands are significantly higher for nurses in Scotland?!

      • Thanks Jim. This is true and ideally we would be all over everything. Truth is, we are a team of just 15 people. With these resources it's hard to ensure everything is done. Accuracy is really importa... read more

        Thanks Jim. This is true and ideally we would be all over everything. Truth is, we are a team of just 15 people. With these resources it's hard to ensure everything is done. Accuracy is really important so we have to focus where we can. We're trying to actually win the NHS as clients(so far they support big overseas businesses like Indeed). If we can do this, we can find funds to employ more people and do more - all of our content is produced for free. We try to inspire people into nursing and support nurses. We earn money from listing jobs, and it's tough balancing our costs with our income - we are a tiny independent in a pond full of huge corporations. Just telling you how it is - ask the NHS to use us to advertise their jobs.
        read less

        Replied by: Matt Farrah
    • Mark Shaw 3 years ago
      Mark Shaw
    • Mark Shaw
      3 years ago

      Is this calculated as years of experience in the NHS or years of experience as a nurse???

      • At that point it's probably best for us to say you need to speak with your Trust.

        Replied by: Matt Farrah
    • John C 3 years ago
      John C
    • John C
      3 years ago

      I work as a nurse Matt and you're right a lot of people do it for the love and not ... read more

      • From my experience of talking to nurses John, I don't think they can become something else - not tougher etc. Otherwise they will lose what it is that makes them who they are. If anything has been lea... read more

        From my experience of talking to nurses John, I don't think they can become something else - not tougher etc. Otherwise they will lose what it is that makes them who they are. If anything has been learned through the last 4 months of a pandemic is how valued nurses are(at least emotionally)by the nation.
        read less

        Replied by: Matt Farrah
    • Louise Tulloch 3 years ago
      Louise Tulloch
    • Louise Tulloch
      3 years ago

      I have worked as a GPN since 1987 I am disappointed that we still have to approach our Gp employers ... read more

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