RGN (Registered Nurse) Salary and Pay Rate Guide


Are you wondering how much registered nurses get paid in the UK? Unfortunately there is no definite answer to the question. We’ve gathered salary and pay rate information for   Our handy pay rate guide below will not only help you make better informed career decisions, as well as maximise your earning potential as an agency nurse.


NHS Nurse Pay Rates for Registered Nurses

Following the “New Pay Deal” in 2018, nurse salaries saw an increase of between 6.5% and 29%. In the NHS, newly qualified nurses automatically start in Band 5, with a starting salary of £24,907. As you gain years of experience and new skills, you will move up the bandings through Band 5 and eventually into Band 6 (should you apply for a Band 6 role). In order to move to a Band 6 position, you will need to gain additional specialist training - in many cases your trust, employer or nursing agency can facilitate this, by offering you CPD. Nurses can also gain an uplift of between 30% and 60% on their pay rates when working unsocial hours, night shifts, weekends and bank holidays. 


Band 5

  • 1 - 2 years experience   £24,907
  • 2 - 4 years experience £26,970
  • 4 - 5 years experience £27,416
  • 6 - 7 years experience £30,615


Band 6

  • 1 - 2 years experience £31,365
  • 2 - 4 years experience £33,176
  • 4 - 5 years experience £33,779
  • 6 - 7 years experience £37,980


Private Nurse Salary and Pay Rates

Private nurse pay rates are unregulated in the same way as the NHS is, and they depend on the role and organisation. Private nurse salaries are usually more or less in line with NHS bandings, or slightly higher. It’s worth noting that alongside pay rates not being regulated, there are no benefit guidelines for private nursing, so often benefits packages for private nurse jobs do not rival those offered by the NHS.


Agency Nurse Pay Rates for Registered Nurses

Typically, agency nurses get paid on an hourly rate, depending on the setting they’re working in, shift type and specialism. As with “Agenda for Change” pay rates, agency nurses can supplement their basic pay with working nights, weekends or bank holidays. At Mayday Healthcare, we are an “on framework” agency, meaning that we have been audited and vetted to ensure the highest level of service, but also that we abide by “on framework” pay rates.


Agency Nurse Pay Escalated Rates

Escalated rates allow trust to pay agency nurses more than the amount stated in the rate cap or framework agreement. If a healthcare organisation or hospital is experiencing concerns over patients safety or external stresses such as winter pressures, nurses in high demand may be paid an escalated rate. Other factors that can incur an escalated rate include jobs in very remote locations, or during periods where hospitals experience a shortage of available nurses. 


You can explore our salary information in more detail on our Salary Hub here. We’ve collected salary data and pay rate details for nurses across the country. 

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