In 2010 West Suffolk Hospital NHS Trust was challenged by the BMA on behalf of a number of junior doctors regarding the working practice of their rota. These representations were based on evidence provided through monitoring exercises, undertaken during the doctors' placement at the hospital. The BMA claimed that the exercises in question showed the rota to be non-compliant with both the New Deal and European Working Time Directive due to the following:
- a failure by the Trust to ensure that the doctors received their natural breaks on at least 75% of their duties;
- the Trust target for natural breaks should have been 100% rather than 75%.
The doctors claimed that the working pattern on the rota was non-compliant for the relevant period and that this had been accepted by the Trust, and therefore that band 3 payments should be made. If successful, this would have resulted in the Trust making over £750,000 of additional salary payments for past, present and future doctors of this rota.
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