West Yorkshire Police spent more than £3.3 million on calling out doctors to prisoners in a single year – more than any other force in the country.

A Freedom of Information request has revealed £3,375,000 was paid out by the force to ensure prisoners got the medical attention they needed.

The figure is more than other forces of a similar size, including Greater Manchester which spent £2,455,000 and the West Midlands which paid out £2,985,000.

Shipley Tory MP Philip Davies, who obtained the figures, said forces must look to see if savings can be made.

He said: “It just seems to me that it is an astonishing amount of money being spent by police forces across the country but in particular West Yorkshire. This is money that the police cannot spend on employing police officers on the front line so it is crucial these costs are kept to a minimum.

“I wonder if there is a way of doing it more cheaply and efficiently as these are staggering amounts of money.

“People are kept in custody clogging up the cells waiting for people to come out to them and I am sure it is for the most spurious reasons at times. We need to look at these amounts in West Yorkshire and further afield across the country and stop so much of the police budget being spent in this way.”

West Yorkshire Police pointed out that it is the fourth largest force in England and Wales and detained more than 130,000 people last year.

A spokesman said: “Serco Health staff attended 41,209 calls spread between 11 custody suites and are available 24/7. A significant number of people detained can have drug, alcohol and mental health issues alongside injuries or those requiring medication. Dependant on the circumstances a doctor will arrive immediately, within 60 minutes, within 90 minutes or by appointment.

“Medical staff deal with a broad range of requests including illness, assessing fitness to detain, obtaining blood samples and providing advice. Specialist doctors are also required to assist with offences of a sexual nature where intimate samples are required from both suspects and victims.”

Last month the Government announced that the West Yorkshire Police budget is to be cut by more than £5 million with savings expected to come from cutting waste and not frontline services.

The force was expecting a £194m revenue grant and a further £5.6m as a capital grant for 2010/11. But as part of a £125m cut to forces across the country, it will get £189.2m and £5.2m respectively, £5.2m less than expected.

Last Saturday, the Telegraph & Argus revealed that the force is set to recruit 60 fewer officers as part of a range of measures to cut costs.