Junior doctors crippling NHS with 96-hour strike are claiming up to £10,000 in taxpayer-funded ‘life admin’ fees to help them relocate or commute during training, figures show
- Over £40million claimed by trainee doctors in relocation expenses in five years
- Supports those who relocated or commute with allowance of up to £10,000
Striking junior doctors are claiming up to £10,000 in taxpayer-funded ‘life-admin’ fees, figures reveal.
More than £40million has been claimed by trainee doctors in relocation expenses, which are exempt from income tax, in the past five years.
The fund supports junior doctors who have to relocate or commute during training, with the allowance rising from £8,000 to £10,000 in 2020 after a consultation between the British Medical Association and stakeholders.
Data obtained by the Daily Telegraph shows the amount claimed in 2021/22 increased by more than a quarter compared with the previous year – £9.98million compared with £7.86million.
Nearly £8million has been claimed in 2022/23 up to February.
More than £40million has been claimed by trainee doctors in relocation expenses, which are exempt from income tax, in the past five years (pictured: junior doctors taking part in a rally at Trafalgar Square in London during a nationwide strike on April 11)
Trainee medics are eligible if they have to relocate 30 miles from home or travel more than an hour to work.
Successful applicants can claim costs via their NHS trust, which then charges Health Education England – the workforce arm of the health service.
Trusts are able to cover trainees for estate agents’ and solicitors’ fees, stamp duty and temporary accommodation.
Other incidental expenses, such as nursery registration and storage unit hire, can also be covered.
John O’Connell, chief executive of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: ‘Patients are tired of complaints about funding from a health service that already receives record levels of cash.
‘With doctors able to bill taxpayers for life admin and other perks, households will rightly recognise that a doctor’s salary is just one part of the package.
‘Ministers must ensure that when discussing pay, they view negotiations in the round.’
But Dr Vivek Trivedi, co-chairman of the BMA junior doctors committee, said: ‘It is misleading to suggest that junior doctors derive any financial gain from this policy.’
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