Junior doctors strike to have “significant impact” on local hospitals

Image above: Charing Cross Hospital

Strike action to last 72 hours

Junior doctors have began four days of strike action, which a west London NHS trust says will have a “significant impact” on patient care.

The British Medical Association (BMA) declared junior doctors will be striking for 72 hours from 14-17 June in a dispute over pay and conditions.

Moreover, the BMA has warned there will be a minimum of three strike days per month until the expiration of their strike mandate in August. A BMA spokesperson said:

“Since April’s strikes, we have had three weeks of negotiations with the Government, seeking a deal that fully restores pay for junior doctors after the more than 26% drop they have suffered over the last 15 years… In that time we have received an offer which is in no way credible or even reasonable for where we are in the negotiating process.”

All the London hospitals affected are: Barnet, Charing Cross Hospital, Croydon, Ealing Hospital, Epsom, Great Ormond Street, Guy’s, Hillingdon, Homerton, Jane Atkinson Centre, King George Hospital, King’s College, Kingston, Lewisham, Maudsley, Newham, North Middlesex UH, Northwick Park, Princess Royal, Bromley, QEH Woolwich, Queen’s Hospital, Royal Free, Royal London, Royal Marsden, St Anne’s, St Bart’s, St George’s, St Mary’s, St Thomas’, University College and Whipps Cross.

Above: Tweet by Dr Mary Bousted showing support for junior doctors picketing outside St Thomas’ Hospital in Lambeth

No services exempt from action, says Imperial College Healthcare Trust

A spokesperson for Imperial College Healthcare Trust, which oversees Charing Cross Hospital and St Mary’s Hospital, said:

“We expect this will have a significant impact on our hospitals, with no services exempt from the action. As with all industrial action, our priority will be to ensure everyone’s safety.

“We will continue to run urgent and emergency services throughout the strike, including our A&E departments and maternity units. However, to help us run these services safely, we expect we will need to reschedule most of the planned operations and outpatient appointments that are currently booked in for those days. If we need to reschedule your appointment, we will aim to contact you directly by Monday 12 June to tell you. We will arrange a new appointment as soon as we can

“We are expecting a challenging few days, with extended waits in our A&E departments. We encourage anyone who needs non-emergency medical help or advice to go to NHS 111 online or call 111. But, if you need emergency care (for instance if someone is seriously ill, injured or their life is at risk), you should continue to call 999.”

More strike dates likely

Previously, junior doctors rejected Health Secretary Steve Barclay’s proposed pay increase of 5% and a one-time payment of at least £1,655. The BMA remains determined that a 35% raise is essential to compensate for the below-inflation pay rises experienced over the last 15 years.

In addition to junior doctors, consultant doctors are also undergoing a separate ballot process until 27 June to determine whether they should strike. Potential strike dates include 20 and 21 July.

See Imperial College Healthcare Trust’s website for more information on healthcare during the strikes:

imperial.nhs.uk

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