GPs' pay rises while dentists' earnings decrease again

Pay for the majority of GPs in the UK rose to £101,500 in 2014/15 from £99,800 in 2013/14

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GPs' pay has risen slightly while dentists' continues to fall.

New figures from NHS Digital show that pay for the majority of GPs in the UK rose to £101,500 in 2014/15 from £99,800 in 2013/14, a 1.7% increase.

Among dentists in England and Wales, there was a drop in pay, continuing a trend that began a decade ago.

Their average taxable income (after expenses) was £70,500, a 1.6% fall on the £71,700 in 2013/14.

The British Dental Association (BDA) said its own analysis showed that income for dentists in England and Wales has fallen by 35% in real terms over the last decade.

It argues that rising NHS charges for patients, brought in by the Government, are designed to make up for the falling amounts of overall funding from ministers.

Henrik Overgaard-Nielsen, the BDA's chairman of general dental practice, said: "This 35% fall in NHS dentists' real incomes over the last decade is without parallel in the public sector.

"Governments across the UK are squeezing NHS dentistry until the pips squeak. Every penny of investment this service receives comes from dentists' own pockets, and this collapse in real incomes has a real impact on our ability to deliver the improvements in facilities, equipment and training our patients deserve.

"These savage cuts have long ceased to be a question of 'pay restraint' or 'efficiency savings'.

"A wilful singling out of an entire sector of dedicated health professionals is irresponsible, unsustainable, and carries consequences for millions of NHS patients.

"The Government has taken £170 million of direct funding out of NHS dentistry in England since 2010, and there are no pledges of capital investment to sweeten this pill. Our patients deserve better than a strategy that rests on them putting in more, while ministers pay less."

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