A doctor was fined £100, twice, after staying a few minutes beyond his 12-hour nightshifts at a hospital. Dr Malinga Ratwatte says he was less than 10 minutes late back to his car at the end of his shift.
He said: “I was dealing with a patient who had a threat to their airway. She had a traumatic event leading to the swelling of her neck. That was why I had to stay late.
“Even with general private parking there is usually a leeway time.”
Dr Ratwatte, training to be a GP in North London, also does nights at three hospitals and asked us not to name the trust involved. He said bosses offered to help him appeal – after his story went viral on social media.
Another £100 fine followed the first, for a similarly slight lateness.
Dr Mike Kemp, co-chair of the British Medical Association (BMA) UK junior doctors committee, told Metro.co.uk : “It is utterly deplorable that NHS staff, who have given so much to protect us during this pandemic – and in the midst of a cost-of-living crisis no less – should be penalised with expensive parking charges as they provide essential care to patients.”
A spokesperson for campaign group Doctors Vote said a newly qualified doctor would have to work for a whole shift to pay off a fine, adding: “Financially they would be better off having not turned up for the shift.”
The Department of Health and Social Care said NHS staff were given free hospital car parking at the height of the pandemic, which ended on 31 March. It added: “Free parking for staff on night shifts will continue.”