Outrage over NHS chief’s �18,000 removals expenses

TAXPAYERS have been landed with a bill of more than �18,000 in “removal expenses” after an NHS finance chief relocated to Hertfordshire from Kent.

Coming amid large-scale public sector belt-tightening, the five-figure payout, which is within NHS guidelines, was slammed after it emerged in latest figures released by the East and North Herts NHS Trust.

Finance director Paul Traynor was paid the exes, totalling �18,189.56, after his move from Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust, where he had been the finance director since mid-2005.

The payout, which also included stamp duty, came to light in the latest Statement of Board of Directors Expenses, and was deemed to have been paid “in line with standing NHS policy”.

But Nick Mossman, of Hearts Removals, in Marley Road, WGC, said: “They didn’t move the house brick-by-brick and rebuild it did they?”

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The payout was also blasted by campaign group the TaxPayers’ Alliance.

A spokeswoman fumed: “This is an astonishingly high claim for removals and it would appear that Mr Traynor and the NHS trust have not sought to get the best value for taxpayers’ money; surely this could have been done for less? The NHS must face up to reality and tighten its belt, costs like this must be kept under control.

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“Ordinary taxpayers want to see their money going into healthcare, not wasted on over-priced extras.”

She added: “Just wondering, would it have been cheaper to hire a chopper for him to commute?!”

Trust chief executive Nick Carver said: “Paul Traynor’s relocation expenses were in line with trust policy.

“The policy exists to make sure we attract the very best people to lead our organisation into the future and make sure that we, as an NHS trust, are delivering the highest quality of care to the community.”

He added: “Paul has excellent experience and has proved to be a tremendous asset to the team.”

�18,000 would comfortably pay for a dialysis machine and almost pay a nurse’s salary for a year.

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