• Difference in hourly pay between men and woman at the DH is 14 per cent
  • All Whitehall departments have published annual data on gender pay gap
  • Average gender pay gap for bonuses is 33 per cent

Women working at the at the Department of Health earn up to 14 per cent less than men an hour – despite women making up two-thirds of its workforce.

The DH has published a report on its gender pay gap alongside other Whitehall departments, which reveals the scale of the challenge to achieve pay equality for women in the civil service.

Public Health England, an executive agency of the DH, had the worst gender pay gap with women earning 16 per cent less than men on average.

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency, another executive agency, had a pay gap of 11 per cent.

Almost 80 per cent of staff in the lower quartile for pay at the DH are women, while more men are in senior civil services roles, which means higher pay and bonuses.

The average gender pay gap for bonuses at the DH was 33 per cent, though the median rate gap was 10 per cent.

Almost 20 per cent of men received a bonus compared to 18 per cent of women.

The figures have been published after the government introduced legislation requiring organisations with 250 or more employees to report annually on their gender pay gap.

The Department of Transport is the government department with largest gender pay gap at 17 per cent, while the smallest is at the Department of Culture, Media and Sport with 3 per cent. Across Whitehall, the overall gender pay gap is 12.6 per cent, down from 13.6 per cent in 2016.

A DH spokeswoman said: “The civil service is leading the way in tackling the gender pay gap, both by being extremely transparent about current pay levels and by making year on year improvements in closing the gap.

“We are also outperforming the private sector in this crucial area. We know there is more to do, so we will continue to go even further with new actions such as encouraging more opportunities for flexible working.”

The DH said the gender pay gap for the public sector as a whole was 19 per cent, compared to 24 per cent in the private sector.