Thank you to those who contacted me me about NHS pensions.
As I’m sure you know, a reformed NHS scheme was introduced on 1 April 2015 to calculate pension based on career average earnings, with transitional arrangements permitting individuals who, on 1 April 2012 were within 10 years of normal pension age to continue participating in the old ‘final salary’ pension scheme arrangements.
The transitional arrangements were put in place to allow a long-term run in, thereby allowing NHS staff who were more than 10 years from retirement age time to plan for the future. The new scheme utilises a salary based system of incremental tax free minimum contributions. It also enables a flexible approach in many cases, with some members able to withdraw a pension while continuing to work.
The Department of Health and Social Care has consulted on proposals to change NHS pension scheme regulations from 1 April 2019. These changes include a 20.6 per cent contribution rate for employers (a 6.3 percentage point increase) plus the 0/08 per cent scheme administration charge with member contribution rates staying at the same level, and equalisation for same-sex couples (whether married or in a civil partnership) with those for opposite-sex married couples. The consultation closed on 28 January 2019 and a response will be published in due course.
Along with my colleagues in the Department of Health and Social Care, I am keen to retain senior clinicians who bring years of expertise in their fields to the NHS. Through the £20.5 billion investment the Government is seeking to make the NHS an employer of choice, with flexible working and a worthwhile pension arrangement. Your contributions to the above consultation would be most welcome.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.