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The minimum a podiatrist should work for?

Discussion in 'United Kingdom' started by MissB, May 3, 2012.

  1. MissB

    MissB Active Member

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    Hello all,

    I've been doing some searching but can't seem to find an answer to the following question: is there a minimum amount that a podiatrist/healthcare professional can be paid per patient, or per hour, when working privately as an associate?

    For instance, does the minimum wage apply? AND, if the minimum wage does apply, does this take into account tax and national insurance. For example, if you were being pain the minimum wage of £6.50 an hour (£3.50 a patient) BEFORE tax and NI contributions, and on top of this you had to pay your society fees etc. then surely this would be BELOW the minimum wage? Is this legal??
  2. If I were being paid £3.50 per patient, I wouldn't bother; I'd get a paper round instead.
  3. W J Liggins

    W J Liggins Well-Known Member

    No, there is no legal limit outside the national minimum wage.

    If you really are being offered employment at these rates then you must determine what you want. You might, for example, set up your own practice by renting space from a GP.

    Good Luck
  4. wdd

    wdd Well-Known Member

    I'd have thought that for an assistant just starting 40% of your takings would be about right; it 40% for you and 60% for the practice.

    If that works out at £3.50 per patient follow Simons advice.

    Knock on the door of your professional body and ask for advice.

  5. Disgruntled pod

    Disgruntled pod Active Member

    The law says that you can charge as little or as much as you want to!

    Anybody offering a throrough 30 min service for £3 is a complete and utter fool. What a business advisor called a "busy fool."

    There was a church minister in Northamptonshire doing that. His main income was his church work. When a lecturer (who taught this guy) heard about it, their reaction was, "any student who studied here is more than welcome to come back and see us, except him. That fee degrades this profession."

    Price fixing is highly illegal!
  6. MissB

    MissB Active Member

    I don’t quite know how to take some of your comments.

    But I do feel slightly worse!

    Perhaps I should get a paper round…
  7. davidh

    davidh Podiatry Arena Veteran

    If you are a member of the Scociety then approach them and ask what the average, not minimum fee is in your area.
    Fees differ from area to area, as well as from practitioner to practitioner.

    As a guide, BUPA are offering private practitioners £45.00 per patient for a first consultation, and £25.00 for a follow-up visit to see their insured patients.
    There is a proviso. Podiatrists treating BUPA patients must have been qualified 5 years.
    A few on here (me included) will not work for these fees.

    A newly-qualified basic grade NHS Podiatrist is paid considerably more than the minimum wage, so it may be that previous posters simply did not understand your question.
  8. RobinP

    RobinP Well-Known Member

    As other posters have said, fees differ from area to area. So taking (for example) a 40/60 or 50/50 split in a practice will have different end results for you depending on the practice fees. ie a practice that charges £40 per treatment will pay you more on a 40% split than a practice offering you 50% on a £30 treatment. This seems very obvious but you would be amazed how many associates don't work this out

    As David said, he will not work for the fees BUPA are offering and I don't blame him.

    I don't believe there is a minimum amount. However, what you also have to work out is if the practice at which you are an associate are offering you employment (as a salaried worker), then your hourly rate will effectively be lower if you work it out over full time hours. If, on the other hand, you are working on fee share, you are taking the risk that you may not be very busy and you may not earn a guaranteed amount. If you are very busy, then you stand to earn more.

    I doubt that you would be earning minimum wage either way but also consider what you stand to gain from the practice in terms of experience/skills/variety of skills and surrounding environment. Sometimes they are worth taking slightly less money for in the short term in order to improve your long term prospects
  9. i-a-n

    i-a-n Member

    Won't patients being charged that little be (rightly) dubious too?
  10. Perpetuallyperplexed

    Perpetuallyperplexed Welcome New Poster

    £6.50 an hour for treating two patients an hour is scandalous.

    If (and it seems likely) at that price you are just doing 'simply nails' treatments you could be doing four an hour. Even then it is not great.

    However, you are a Podiatrist. Podiatrists practice podiatry.

    The place I run pays Podiatrists a lot more, and the idea mentioned of a 40/60 split is common. The split in our practice for experienced podiatrists is actually slightly in favour of the Podiatrist.

    The society conducted a study in 2010 (I think) surveying average prices. The average then for a treatment in the Northwest UK was £22.50. If a business was taking anything like that and paying you a few quid I would tell them to stick it where the star in our solar system cannot radiate light.
  11. Tindallpod

    Tindallpod Member

    The minimum wage in the UK is actually £6.13 at the moment - so even worse, and if you are employed, then tax and NI come out of that. You should be able to get working tax cresit which would beef it up a bit, but if anyone needs beefing up (made up term) then it is someone who offers that wage for that service.

    Doing 2 private patients a day on your own even if it's just a private house call for a consulation would net you more than a day's work on minimum wage.

  12. I was thinking about this. Yesterday, I only saw a couple of patients early in the morning and spent the rest of the day making orthoses. So, actually by the time I take my over-heads out of what I took in income yesterday I probably made squat. Yesterday was an investment for the future day. Today I dispensed all the orthoses I made yesterday and made a very handsome profit, thank you very much for asking. It's all swings and roundabouts. I like Friday's.
  13. blinda

    blinda MVP

    I like Fridays too. Reminds me of "CRACKERJACK!"...looked for a YouBook link and was reminded of Kevin`s observation....Lovely :eek:
  14. blinda

    blinda MVP

    Miss B,

    You have entered this forum with gutso; an admirable quality in my book. So, don`t beat yerself up. Me thinks you have much to contribute. Keep it up.

  15. markjohconley

    markjohconley Well-Known Member

    ...at least an hour a week... to keep the neural pathways working...
  16. carolethecatlover

    carolethecatlover Active Member

    As of last October, the adult minimum wage is £6.07 per hour.
  17. wdd

    wdd Well-Known Member

    But surely that is the problem. She can't contribute to the fighting fund, she can't tell us how to get rich, she can't keep up that part of professionalism which is based on income, eg buying expensive equipment, etc. she can't even contribute to the next round of drinks.

    Come on Miss B get out of the abusive situation you are in at the moment. Write back and tell us how you are going to do it, even better tell us how you are doing it and we will cheer you to the rafters!

    Ready, steady, go.

    We are all right behind you.

  18. bmjones1234

    bmjones1234 Active Member

    See this is where I get frustrated in the UK, our minimun wage is one of the worst in the EU; but as a qualified medical practitioner and we have no buffer to protect our earnings - sure guess it's life, but still the purpose of entering a skilled field was to AVOID minimun wage not earn less or a fraction over it, but a significant wage to live a normal life.

    I don't think that is unreasonable after having done some shocking jobs over the years and 3+ years study to get the degree! Is it just me that perhaps feel the Pods are slightly more exposed than other fields?

    Rant over :D
  19. MissB

    MissB Active Member

    Sorry for my late response, but I've been having problems replying to messages due to the screen being 'unavailable'. Anyone else had this problem?? Very frustrating!!


    First of all I would like to say that I think some of you have misinterpreted what I was asking. I wasn’t trying to price fix and I definitely don’t want to degrade the profession. I am fiercely protective of podiatry, and believe me when I say that I have fought my situation. But…I am newly qualified and I thought that I was lucky to have a job doing podiatry at all. I also thought that it was ‘good experience’.

    I am not weak, I just tried to make the best of a bad situation, and that is why I didn’t ‘just leave’.

    Perhaps I should have explained myself better. This was the situation:
    I worked as an associate for a private clinic, my first job since qualifying in 2011. I was told that I would get half the cost of treatment, which for routine podiatry was £30.00 a patient (£15.00 to me). This would equate to £30.00 an hour. Pretty standard right? So I accepted the job.

    What actually happened was this. The company I worked for decided to do a Groupon scheme, have you heard of it? It’s basically a voucher website that offers discounted services. The voucher offered two 30 minute podiatry treatments for £24.00. The company I worked for payed me £6.50 an hour for this, so £3.25 a patient. The service I provided was not just nail cutting, it was a full podiatry. The scheme started in October and is still ongoing. I had not agreed to do this.

    I was seeing 20 + patients a day. Exhausting! And earning a pittance for it. No holiday or sick pay. No help with CPD.

    BIG THANK YOU to those of you who have given me advice and have helped me to understand what I should do. I have felt very alone in my situation, particularly as I am the only podiatrist in the practice. It is a great feeling to know that I have your support. This comment especially really lifted my spirits:

    Thank you so much for your kind words Blinda 

    So…you may all be pleased to know that I will soon be out of my situation, WOOHOO!!! I have been offered a job as a bank podiatrist.


    Miss B
  20. Ian Drakard

    Ian Drakard Active Member

    Thanks for the explanation and well done for getting out

    It probably has been good experience if not in the way you intended- I doubt you will ever be taken advantage of like that in the future ;)

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