1. General UK population
Average age of retirement in the UK is 65.1 years for men and 63.9 years for women.
The average retirement age of UK doctors contrasts with trends in the general population.
2. Across medicine
59.6 Average actual retirement age
58.9 For women
59.9 For men
142% increase in the number of hospital doctors claiming their NHS pension on voluntary early retirement grounds (164 in 2008 to 397 in 2018)
40% of doctors will have to stop taking part in initiatives to reduce NHS Trust waiting lists due to an adverse effect on their pension
43% of doctors who have already retired cite "pressure of work" as a reason for retirement
70% of doctors are frustrated by the amount of non-clinical work such as administration
Main factors influencing retirement:
- 85% Health and wellbeing
- 66% Workload
- 61% Burnout
SAS: Specialty and Associate Specialist
LEDs: Locally Employed Doctors
A full time NHS contract for consultants and SAS is comprised of 10 programmed activities (PAs) per week. However, due to service demands, many O&G doctors are working more than this.
41.7% SAS / LEDs
<50% Just under half of trainees and a third of consultants and SAS / LEDs
In 2019 the RCOG conducted a retirement planning survey of members aged 35 years and above. The survey gathered information on working patterns as well as actual and planned retirement. Respondents included advanced trainees, consultants and SAS / locally employed doctors (LEDs). The following figures are taken from that survey.
The RCOG would like to thank its membership for participating in the survey and providing essential information to inform conversations with key decision makers.
4. SAS / LEDs
Specialty and Associate Specialist (SAS) and locally employed doctors (LED) provide an invaluable service to O&G departments, with many performing highly specialist roles such as running clinics and theatre lists.
76% of SAS / LEDs do on-call work
31.76% of SAS / LEDs doctors expect to retire before the age of 63
SAS / LEDs are more likely than consultants to be resident when working on call
59.64% of O&G consultants expect to retire before the age of 63 (20% before the age of 60).
75% of consultants have reduced sessions over the past 2 years
97+% of consultants have an NHS pension
Main reasons for reducing sessions include:
- Achieving a suitable work/life balance
- Pension taxation
- Maintaining health and wellbeing
- Excessive workload, including too much on-call