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About the junior doctor and consultant contract negotiations

Junior doctor in A&E Manchester
Juniors - find out how this affects you Consultants - find out how this affects you


Background to negotiations

  • The story so far

    Although the negotiations on the junior doctor and consultant contracts began at the same time, during August and September 2015 decisions made by the respective committees took the discussions in different directions.

    Story so far for junior doctors

    Story so far for consultants

  • Across the nations

    The situation regarding changes to your contract is complex.

    It depends on your branch of practice - junior or consultant - and what country you work in.

    Find out more

  • Role of the DDRB

    The DDRB (Doctors' and Dentists' Review Body) is the independent organisation which every year considers the pay for doctors and dentists holding posts in the NHS on nationally agreed terms. It was set up after the Royal Commission on Doctors' and Dentists' Remuneration in 1960 in order to protect medical professionals' living standards from "arbitrary government action".

    It makes its recommendations directly to the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for Health, and their equivalents in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

    The health departments, NHSE (NHS Employers) and the BMA (on behalf of the profession) send written evidence to the DDRB each September, followed by oral evidence in October. The DDRB usually reports to the Prime Minister in December each year and the report is made public, with the government's decision, a few weeks later, for implementation on the following 1 April.

    Find out more about DDRB

  • Why were contracts referred to DDRB?

    The referrals to the DDRB for junior doctor and consultant contracts were separate to the annual submission of evidence to the DDRB, which refers only to pay.

    The DDRB were engaged by the government in this instance to consider:

    • Pay proposals to end automatic incremental progression
    • Information on the working patterns of doctors in training
    • Sharing the existing pay pot in a different way to increase pensionable salaries, reward additional work, and support services and training across a seven-day week

    The BMA submitted evidence to the DDRB for their special remit on contract reform in 2014. In July 2015, the DDRB submitted its final report.

    DDRB reports and summaries

    Final DDRB report

    Key points of the DDRB report

    DDRB recommendations for junior doctors

    DDRB observations for consultants

    BMA evidence to DDRB