Hospital Dr News

Junior doctor strike: contract deadlock continues despite full strike by trainees 

Junior doctors’ outstanding concerns about the government’s contract – which it intends to impose in August – are about more than pay.

That is the message from the BMA to the Health Secretary as the junior doctor strike ended in deadlock.

The BMA has written to Jeremy Hunt once again calling for him to lift the imposition and get back around the negotiating table.

The government repeated its view that the strike action was irresponsible and politically motivated, and the contract will be introduced as intended.

Wednesday’s stoppage ended at 17:00 BST, bringing to an end two days of industrial action which saw 78% of doctors who were expected to work not turning up.

The letter outlines key issues, beyond pay, which are still outstanding and need to be resolved in talks.

Dr Johann Malawana, BMA junior doctor committee chair, said: “What happens next is in the government’s hands. It cannot continue to ignore the tens of thousands of junior doctors opposed to this contract and who want to end this dispute through talks.

“I have written to health secretary calling on him again to lift the imposition, re-enter talks and address junior doctors’ outstanding concerns which are about much more than just pay.

“The health secretary himself has admitted there are serious, outstanding issues around excessive working hours, training, recruitment and retention and the impact these have on the ability of the NHS to deliver a seven-day service. He must now get back around the table so that these can be resolved and trust between junior doctors and the government can be rebuilt.”

This strike involved the first full withdrawal of labour by junior doctors in the history of the NHS, during which thousands of clinic appointments and operations were cancelled.

Malawana added: “After eight days of industrial action, including the first full withdrawal of labour by doctors in the history of the NHS, Jeremy Hunt must, for the sake of patients as well as a generation of doctors, choose negotiation over imposition, get back around the table and end this dispute through talks.”

The Department of Health and Number 10 had intimated that any escalation in strike action would not stop imposition of the contract from this summer.

A spokesperson said: “The government is confident in its position and we’ve made that clear to the BMA.”

Bookmark and Share

Post a Comment

Enter this security code

Submit Comment for Moderation