Doctor salary: how much does a doctor earn?

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Earning potential is one of the most positive things about a career in medicine, but how much does a doctor earn? Although you must undoubtedly enjoy the job itself, the hours are long, your shifts are high-stress and it can often feel like the rest of your life takes a back seat. Luckily, doctors in the UK are rewarded for their hard work with an extremely competitive wage. Here’s what you can expect to earn at various stages of your career.

How much does a doctor earn in training?

The basic pay for a junior doctor begins at around £25,000. Previously you could have expected slightly more pay for ‘antisocial hours’ (such as working on Saturdays), but recent changes by the Department of Health have meant that Saturday work is now part of a junior doctor’s normal week. Night shifts and being ‘on call’ are still paid higher than usual. In your second year of training your basic pay can rise to £30,000 or more.

Compared to other graduate or entry-level roles, this is at the high end of average and is a particularly good wage for someone not yet fully qualified. A trainee teacher, for example, can earn as little as £16,000 while completing their on-the-job training.

After a doctor qualifies

Once qualified, doctors have some of the highest salaries of all professionals. GPs, for example, can expect to earn between £55,000 and £84,000 per year. A doctor working in the Accident and Emergency department earns around £46,000 per year, while cardiologists and neurologists earn in the region of £60,000.

After becoming a medical specialist

Many doctors choose to specialise in a certain field, which requires more years of training and a lot of determination and drive. It’s important to choose a specialism that you really want to invest some time in – but thankfully, you are rewarded with an even higher salary.

Specialist doctors in training can expect to earn around £36,000, but once qualified consultants are some of the most sought after professionals in the industry and get paid between £76,000 and £102,000.

It’s stressful being a doctor and requires years and years of hard work – but you are certainly rewarded financially!

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