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How Much do Doctors REALLY Make?

Updated: Jun 2

Decoding Doctor Salaries in the UK: A Financial Journey from Junior Doctor to Consultant

If you've ever wondered about the financial landscape of being a doctor in the UK, you're not alone. Many factors come into play when it comes to understanding your take-home pay, with your grade being a significant influencer. In this blog post, I'll take you through the financial journey from being a junior doctor all the way to becoming a consultant or GP, shedding light on what you can expect at each level.

Why Discuss Doctor Salaries?

Before diving into the numbers, it's essential to understand why discussing doctor salaries matters. While doctors in the UK generally earn well compared to other professions, having a solid financial plan is crucial to avoid ending up broke and broken. Let's delve into the numbers to help you make informed financial decisions right from the start of your medical career.

FY1: Foundation Year 1

As an FY1 doctor, your basic salary is £28,808 per year. This figure can increase with banding, which ranges from 20% to 80% depending on the extra and unsociable hours you work. After deductions for tax, national insurance, pension contributions, and possibly student loans, your take-home pay averages around £1797.72 per month.

Finance Trivia Quiz:

  1. How much of your pre-tax annual income should you spend on a car? a) Not more than 100% b) Not more than 50% c) Not more than 35% d) Not more than 10%

FY2: Senior House Officer (SHO)

Moving up to FY2 or SHO level, your basic salary increases to £33,345 per year, resulting in a take-home pay of approximately £2026.68 per month after deductions. At this stage, you may also start locuming for extra income, typically earning around £30 per hour for SHO-level shifts.

ST1-ST2 or GPST1-GPST2: General Practice Training

Transitioning to GP training, your basic salary rises to £39,476 per year, translating to a take-home pay of £2335.64 per month. This phase offers ample teaching time and opportunities for professional growth.

Registrar and Beyond

As you progress to registrar levels, your pay increases substantially, reaching around £50,017 per year. However, this stage also involves exam costs and higher responsibilities. Consultants and GPs further advance in pay scales, with the potential for significant earnings based on sessions worked and partnership status.

Financial Trivia Recap:

  1. What mortgage can you afford based on your annual income? a) Up to two times b) Three to four and a half times c) Five to nine times d) Up to ten times


Understanding doctor salaries in the UK is a crucial aspect of financial planning for medical professionals. From navigating junior roles to achieving consultant status, each career stage brings unique financial considerations. By being aware of your earning potential and financial responsibilities, you can make informed decisions to secure your financial well-being throughout your medical career journey.

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