SoR submits evidence to NHS Pay Review Body

Society makes strong case for improved radiography pay and reward in 2023 and beyond

Published: 24 January 2023 Trade Union & IR

The SoR has submitted evidence to the NHS Pay Review Body (PRB) for England, Wales and Northern Ireland, ahead of giving further oral evidence in early February. 

Our PRB evidence makes the case for greater government investment and improved workforce planning through the medical imaging and radiography lens, directing the PRB towards a series of key recommendations for short and long term actions.

Dean Rogers, the SoR’s Executive Director for Industrial Strategy & Member Relations said: “The NHS is undeniably in crisis but it isn’t too late to turn things around. However, the situation is increasingly volatile and dangerous. We need an urgent change of direction. Every day NHS leaders keep doing the same things, repeating the same mistakes, and ignoring the same problems, then the more difficult, expensive and complicated it gets to save the NHS.

“Our evidence presents this reality and points to key actions that need to happen - firstly to stabilise the NHS and guide it to calmer waters, before then repairing and rebuilding so it is strong enough to meet the challenges moving ahead.”

The SoR evidence highlights how the UK government spends 20% less per person on health and social care than the EU15 average – dismantling some politicians’ arguments that the NHS has enough money, or that transformation can happen solely from re-organising how existing budgets are better spent.

Radiography is essential service

Radiography is a keystone to all government health strategies. As such, continued under-investment and poor management of radiography means the Government will fail to meet its health targets. We especially highlight how promised capital spending on community diagnostic centres  will fail without an aligned investment in staff and a workforce plan.

Agency costs arise as a symptom of failed workforce planning. This fuels the illness. More money into basic pay will help manage the symptom but unless this is backed up by safer workplaces, more staff, more and better support for managers etc the workforce crisis will not go away.

Structural weaknesses in the pay system have emerged over a decade of poor pay awards and now also need to be repaired. The effects of these are especially highlighted for:

  • Assistant and support grades
  • New professionals and other Band 5s
  • Managers and leaders at Band 8 and above, where promotion leaves people worse off
  • Ultrasound and sonography
  • Recruitment and retention of overseas’ staff into the NHS

All members are reminded that the SoR still believe the threat of further industrial action may be necessary to achieve real progress for NHS members pay and reward in 2023. All members are requested to check their membership details via our website to support any pay and reward action consultation.

The SoR evidence on pay

Our key recommendations to the PRB include:

  • An above inflation pay award this year, paid earlier than in recent years.
  • Framing any recommendations so as to limit the risk of burnout from excessive hours.
  • Allowing Trusts to use money currently being given to agencies for recruitment and retention payments.
  • Ensuring banding outcomes reflect job content in 2023, for all grades and job profiles.
  • Addressing obvious barriers to retention and progression.

We also call on the PRB to recommend:

  • A longer-term programme of guaranteed above inflation pay awards until the erosion of the value of NHS AfC grade pay since 2010 has been redressed
  • The introduction of independent, published analysis of NHS workforce data
  • That resources be found to better support genuine national partnership working and a tripartite approach to sustaining a safe, fair and credible pay and reward framework.
  • Ways the PRB should strengthen its independence and credibility

Read the full SoR evidence to the PRB at