Warning: Are you a nurse who needs cash in an emergency? Payday loans are an expensive form of credit and should be your last resort. For help with debt, go to moneyhelper.org.uk.

Loans for Nurses in the UK

Lots of professional nurses are applying for payday loans to fund emergency expenses. Find out how many nurses apply for payday loans and why they need them.
Representative example: Borrow £700 for 6 months. 1st monthly repayment of £168.45, 4 monthly repayments of £224.60, last monthly repayment of £112.20. Total repayment £1,179.05. Interest rate p.a. (fixed) 185.39%. Representative APR 611.74%. Our loans are available for 3 to 9 months depending on the loan amount - rates between 295.58% APR and a maximum APR of 1294%.
Warning: Late repayments can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to moneyhelper.org.uk.

Need extra cash for an emergency, or your nurse’s salary just won’t cover you till payday? You’ve come to the right place! The Cashfloat team provides payday loans from £300 to £1,500 for nurses. Apply now and get money into your bank account within an hour of approval*!

7,868 nurses
applied for
payday loans
from Cashfloat in 2020

Whether you’re a student nurse or a fully qualified nurse, we can help. If you need to borrow money for an emergency, like car repairs or paying your rent when you’re short, Cashfloat can get you the money you need fast. Apply here, and you’ll get an instant decision.

Bad credit scores welcome
Flexible monthly repayments
Online application, accessible 24/7
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Nurses and payday loans

Nursing is often thought of as one of the most highly-regarded professions in the UK. It doesn’t seem that way, however, if you look at the salaries they receive. Nurses may have recently received a pay-rise, but they still get below the national average. They were also significantly underpaid for a long period before that.

Unfortunately, nurses in the UK sometimes find themselves struggling financially. Sometimes they even find they’re in need of emergency credit to cover their costs.

In this article, the Cashfloat team examines the nursing profession. We’ll look at the history of nursing, training standards, salaries and pay grievances, with the intention of discovering why so many nurses have to resort to payday loans.

The history of nursing in the UK

The English nurse Florence Nightingale is regarded worldwide as the founder of modern nursing, and the impact she had on nursing began with the changes she made to nursing in the UK.

Florence Nightingale

Nightingale attended the first ever nursing college, which was in Germany, in 1846. Following this, she worked in military hospitals in the Crimean War, eventually bringing changes to care standards there that significantly reduced the death rate. After this, she then built on her experiences in Crimea and elsewhere by establishing a nursing school at Saint Thomas’ Hospital in London in 1860. From there, nurses were trained in modern standards of nursing that Florence had helped to develop herself.

The changes that Florence Nightingale made established nursing as a respected profession and were instrumental in its evolution. You can read more about Florence Nightingale’s life here.

Professional bodies

Later on, the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) was established in the UK in 1915. Subsequent efforts to improve training methods and the start of the National Health Service then developed teaching practices for nurses even further. Standardised professional education and training now makes nursing the well regarded profession we know today.

Becoming a nurse today

To work as a nurse in the UK, you need a degree in nursing, and you have to be registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

To get a degree in nursing, a student usually needs 5 GCSEs plus at least two A levels. During the three-year undergraduate course, trainee nurses have to choose between four specialisms: adults, children, learning disabilities and mental health. Because nursing is such a hands-on job, about half the course is spent on supervised placements in local hospitals or community settings.

Student nurse funding

Before August 2017, nursing students used to receive NHS bursaries to study their degrees. This was scrapped, however, and nowadays nursing students have to use the same student loan system as other students. On top of their student loans, however, nursing students are eligible for support through the NHS Learning Support Fund. Nurses will receive a training grant of at least £5,000 through this fund. Parental support and other financial support is also available, with total support on top of the training grant being as much as £3,000.

Current UK nurse salaries

According to the NHS, a nurse’s annual salary depends on the specific nursing position, the skills required, their experience and the job location. Pay scales for the profession start from £22,383 for bands 1 and 2 and go up to £114,949 for the relatively few positions in Band 9. The average salary for a nurse in the UK is somewhere between £35,000 and £38,000.

It is worth bearing in mind that this is below the UK average salary. On top of this, many nurses have student debt and pay rises also recently lagged behind inflation for a long time. Furthermore, many nurses enter the profession at older ages than other professions, when they have serious financial commitments like childcare or mortgages. Newly qualified nurses also have to survive on low salaries.

Action on nurse’s pay

There are many nurses in the UK. In fact, there are 731,058 nurses on the permanent NMC register. These nurses are active when it comes to pay action, with many choosing to join UNISON, the union for workers in the NHS and local government. Of UNISON’s 1.3 million members, almost half a million are from the NHS.

In recent years, there has been a great deal of dispute between the government and UNISON over the rates of nurse’s pay in the UK. Other organisations, such as the RCN, have also been involved. For many years, nurses complained that pay rises had lagged behind inflation. As well as this, many nurses felt they were underappreciated and underpaid in general. Other problems were also raised.

The 2023 NHS pay deal

In May 2023, the government reached a deal with nurses and the unions that represent them, including UNISON. The deal built on a £1,400 pay rise given in Autumn 2022. An extra one-off lump sum of at least £1,655 was provided as well as a 5% pay rise for all pay points for 2023/2024 and a permanent 10% pay rise for all band 1 and some band 2 salaries.

The deal is generally regarded as a positive step. However, it’s worth noting that this deal comes amid the cost of living crisis. Many nurses had been struggling financially for a considerable amount of time before the deal was reached. Financial hardship also still remains, with much of the additional money being swallowed up by new pressures created by the cost of living crisis. It’s hoped the deal will reduce the number of professional members that need to take on overtime shifts or emergency loans for nurses to make ends meet.

Payday loans for nurses

Every year, Cashfloat provides several thousand payday loans to nurses in the UK. It’s become even more common for us to do so since the onset of the cost of living crisis.

The question is: Why do nurses need payday loans so often?

The cost of living crisis

Well, as we mentioned earlier, the cost of living crisis has made things difficult for lots of people in the UK. For many years before the cost of living crisis, but particularly during it, nurses’ pay lagged seriously behind inflation. This put a lot of people under increased pressure at a difficult time. On top of this, many households have been struggling with rising bills anyway.

As a result of the effect of inflation and rising bills, more and more nurses have been finding themselves struggling financially.

Challenges unique to nursing

Nurses also face certain issues that are unique to the nursing profession. Nursing is a profession that people often enter at a later age, for one thing, and this creates certain issues. At older ages, people often have serious financial commitments like mortgage payments or childcare costs. Studying and receiving starting level salaries can be particularly difficult at this stage, with many nurses turning to short term loan direct lenders to help them deal with these commitments.

Nurses are human

Nurses are also affected by the kind of financial upsets that everyone can be affected by. Normal expenses like paying for groceries, paying bills and covering the cost of children can push everyone to the limit at times. If an unexpected financial emergency happens at a time when you’re short of cash, things can become even more difficult. If your boiler breaks down when you’re stretched already, or your roof starts leaking, a loan might be the only thing that will cover the cost.

Cashfloat payday loans

Payday loans are expensive, but they’re ideal for a financial emergency. With Cashfloat, you get an immediate approval decision and fast funding, and you can borrow between £300 and £1,500. We also have high approval rates, meaning there’s a good chance you’ll get hold of the cash you need.

Apply now

81% of nurses who borrow payday loans are Female
50% of nurses who borrow payday loans are Single
Average age of nurses who borrow payday loans is 38 years old
Most common month for nurses to borrow a payday loan is: September
Top 3 places where teachers borrowed payday loans: London, Manchester and Birmingham
Nurses who borrow payday loans earn an average of £1,924 a month

FAQs about nurse’s pay

How much childcare are nurses entitled to?

With 89% of nurses being female, childcare is a big concern for nurses in general. Some nurses make childcare easier by working night shifts, so they have more time during the day. Others might live near family members who can help by babysitting.

The three main types of government support that are available for nurses are free government-funded childcare, tax free childcare accounts and welfare benefits.

Nurses that work over 16 hours per week and earn at least the National Minimum Wage can get 30 hours of free childcare per week for three and four year olds. Support may also be available to help with two year old children. Some nurses, including those who work longer than the funded childcare hours they’re entitled to, are entitled Universal Credit. Again, this can be used to help with childcare. The government’s tax free childcare scheme can be used to cover up to 20% of the costs of childcare.

What is the annual leave and maternity leave pay for nurses?

The basic annual leave for nurses is 27 days plus an additional 8 days for general or public holidays. After five years, this goes up to 30 days plus public holidays. After 10 years, this goes up to 33 days plus public holidays.

Nurses are entitled to maternity leave for 52 weeks. For the first eight weeks, they receive 100% of their salary, which drops to 50% in the following eighteen weeks plus Statutory Maternity Pay. For the next thirteen weeks, they receive Statutory Maternity Pay only, and in the final 13 weeks, they are on unpaid leave.

How much is sick pay for nurses?

Nurses can get Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) if they earn over £123 a week. SSP is £109.40 a week for up to 28 weeks. They receive it from the fourth working day. Nurses must provide medical evidence after the seventh working day of sick leave.

How much are nurses pensions?

As well as the National State Pension, there is an NHS Pension Scheme that is entirely voluntary. Nurses can join this, although it does not apply to nurses in the private sector. Contributions to the scheme are 5.2% to 12.5%, depending on a person’s salary.

Warning: Late repayments can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to moneyhelper.org.uk.