From basic hourly pay rate, NHS pay gap figure: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Information requested

provide a Scotland-wide pay gap figure for the NHS . . . from a calculation of the average basic hourly pay rate [excluding overtime, bonuses or premiums] for all women and men. . .


Please see the table below, which uses the Scottish Government’s definition of the gender pay gap as the difference in mean full-time equivalent basic earnings for men and women.  All premiums, bonuses and overtime payments are excluded.  Note that the pay bill files used to make these calculations do not provide a ready way of calculating the average basic hourly pay rate, only the average annual full-time equivalent rate. The average measure of pay used is the mean rather than the median, since the median does not deal well with the large numbers of staff on the top point of pay bands and grades. 

Accordingly, the table presents an analysis of average (mean) annual basic pay for all staff employed directly by NHS Boards. The breakdown is by gender and job family and includes the percentage pay gap for the three financial years 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19. The percentages presented use the average (mean) annual basic pay for males as the reference point – in other words, the average (mean) annual basic pay for males is taken to be 100%. Therefore, a negative pay gap figure means that women earn less on average than their male counterparts, and vice versa.


About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at

foi-19-01561 Table of information


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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