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NHSE rubber-stamps guidance requiring GPs to declare income over £156,000

by Anna Colivicchi
20 March 2023

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NHS England is asking the highest-earning GPs to declare their income by 30 April – including partners, salaried and locum GPs.

The commissioner published guidance on the pay transparency requirement at the end of last week, after consulting with the BMA’s GP Committee and the Association of Independent Specialist Medical Accountants (AISMA) late last year.

In the new guidance, NHS England set out who is required to make a ‘pay transparency self-declaration’ and explains the process of making the self-declaration and how the data collected will be used.

The guidance sets the threshold for earnings at which GPs have to declare at £156,000 for 2021/22; £159,000 for 2022/23; and £163,000 for 2023/24.

The self-declaration will need to be completed by the end of April, NHS England has said.

The document states that in addition to those who hold the GP contract as partners (including partners who are not GPs) and contractors who are individual medical practitioners, the following will be required to make a self-declaration for each financial year in which their NHS earnings exceed the threshold for the relevant financial year:

  • partners of clinical sub-contractors and sub-contractors who are an individual (including partners of any onward clinical sub-contractors and any onward clinical sub-contractor who is an individual)
  • those who work for (are engaged by) either a contractor (regardless of whether the contractor is an individual medical practitioner, a partnership or a limited company) or clinical sub-contractor (including any onward clinical sub-contractors) under either:
    • a contract of employment
    • a contract for services
    • or as a company officer (directors and any company secretary).
  • those engaged by a third party to provide clinical services (for example a locum engaged via an employment agency) 

This timeline means that GPs covered by the requirement need to make their first self-declaration of 2021/22 NHS earnings by 23:59 on 30 April.

GPs are required to make the self-declaration on the Forms Platform via the Strategic Data Collection Service (SDCS).

Those with NHS earnings above the threshold for the relevant year will first need to register with the SDCS and then create an account to make their self-declaration on the Forms Platform and those who previously submitted their 2019-20 NHS earnings via the SDCS will need to re-register.

The pay transparency requirement was originally delayed due to the pandemic and then again in November and April last year, when GPs faced the first and second deadlines to submit declarations.

Meanwhile, yesterday chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced the Government will abolish the pensions Lifetime Allowance in a bid to retain GPs and other doctors.

A version of this story was first published on our sister title Pulse.