Retirement Age to Increase for Health Workers

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Byline: By ALAN JONES

The most radical shake-up of the country's biggest pension scheme was unveiled yesterday, affecting the contributions of more than 1.3m health workers ranging from porters to consultants. Under the proposed changes, around 200,000 porters, cleaners and other low-paid workers will have their pension contributions cut while doctors, senior managers and consultants will pay more.

A pension age of 60 will be retained for existing health workers but will increase to 65 for future staff.

The plans will come into effect at the end of next year following consultations organised by a number of trade unions.

Existing members of the pension scheme will keep a normal pension age of 60 and the right to take a pension after the age of 50.

They will also retain a final salary scheme and will have a new option of taking a bigger lump sum on retirement in return for giving up some of their pension.

Union leaders stressed the importance of retaining a final salary scheme.

Beverly Malone, general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, said every nurse in the NHS would be affected by the changes. …