§ Mr. Peter Bottomley
asked the Prime Minister if she will make a statement on the reports of the pay review bodies.
§ The Prime Minister
The first reports of the new Review Body for Nursing Staff, Midwives, Health Visitors and Professions allied to Medicine, and the reports of the Doctors and Dentists Review Body, the Armed Forces Pay Review Body and the Top Salaries Review Body have been published today. Copies are now available in the Vote Office. The Government are grateful to the members of the review bodies for these reports and for the time and care which they have put into their preparation.
The report on nursing staff, midwives and health visitors recommends new rates of pay which will add 7.5 per cent. to the estimated pay bill for 1984–85. In the report on professions allied to medicine the equivalent figure is 7.8 per cent. The Government have decided to accept the recommendations in full with effect from 1 April 1984.
The reports of the Doctors and Dentists Review Body, the Armed Forces Pay Review Body and the Top Salaries Review Body on the higher Civil Service, senior armed forces officers and the judiciary recommend increases which would add 6.9 per cent., 7.6 per cent., and just under 6.5 per cent., respectively, to the estimated 1984–85 pay bills for the groups concerned. Bearing in mind the overall cost and the clear need for continued restraint in public expenditure, the Government consider that it would not be right to implement the recommendations in full from 1 April 1984. The increases payable from that date for all groups will be 3 per cent., and the recommended rates will be paid from 1 November 1984. Pensions will be based on the salaries actually in payment in accordance with the principle set out in my written answer on 13 April 1984 at column 383. The average increase in pay received by these groups over the 12 months beginning 1 April 1984 is estimated to be for doctors and dentists 4.63 per cent.; for the armed forces 4.92 per cent.; and for the higher Civil Service, senior armed forces officers and the judiciary 4.46 per cent.
In the case of the armed forces and generally for the top salary groups the costs of these increases will be contained within existing departmental programmes. In the case of the NHS groups, health authorities will be expected to find 222W from efficiency savings part of the cost in excess of existing provision and the balance will be charged to the reserve.
The pay rates and scales resulting from these decisions will be promulgated as soon as possible. The Government will be considering separately certain recommendations on points of detail.