NHS doctors took £43m in bonuses

NHS doctors took home a substantial bonus last year.
NHS doctors took home a substantial bonus last year.

NHS doctors received more than £43 million of bonuses last year, averaging just over £15,000 per head, according to figures gathered by the Scottish Conservatives.

Consultants and other senior medics receive additional cash in the form of distinction awards and discretionary points.

The statistics, obtained by the Tories through freedom of information laws, show £43,038,750 was paid to 2,858 recipients in 2016/17, up on the £37,351,060 paid to 2,572 staff the previous year.

The Tories said the scale of the payments, which are awarded on top of doctors’ salaries, should be questioned at a time when NHS budgets are under pressure.

The party’s health spokesman Miles Briggs said: “There’s nothing wrong with hardworking medical professionals being incentivised. But senior medics like consultants are already very well remunerated, and many – including NHS workers further down the chain – will question the sheer scale of these payments.”

The Scottish Government confirmed earlier this year that discretionary points would be paid for work done in 2016/17.