FINANCE: Nurses and doctors at all four trusts in Kent have been overpaid by almost £3m since 2007, an investigation has revealed.

After looking into pay at each trust, BBC Radio Kent found that at least 2,389 staff had received some form of overpayment from payroll departments.

The trusts - Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells, East Kent, Dartford and Gravesham, and Medway - said all errors were pursued, with debt collection agencies used in some cases.

They have so far been able to retrieve around two-thirds of the money which was accidentally paid out between the financial years of 2007-08 and 2011-12.

In one case a consultant was given an extra £42,750, while another was overpaid by £33,800.

The investigation also revealed that 312 out of the 5,000 staff employed during 2010-11 at Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells were overpaid by a total of £442,099. However, it has managed to recover £300,631 of this by arranging repayment plans with staff when an error occurred.

The trust has since adopted “a better system and a more diligent approach” to pay, something which a spokesman said had resulted in a significant reduction in its overpayments.