Jeremy Hunt, the Health Secretary has commented that the proposed strikes by Junior Doctors in England could be “very damaging” for patients.
The British Medical Association (BMA) has called for 3 strikes, after talks with the government broke down. The first strike is due to take place on Tuesday 12 January 2016.
It is feared that the strikes will lead to thousands of non-emergency operations and hospital appointments being cancelled in the coming days. This will have a domino effect on care provided to patients.
The BMA argues that it has been left with no choice as the government has failed to address their concerns relating to a new contract and pay.
However, Jeremy Hunt has stated that “the action was unnecessary” as the talks had been making progress. He goes on to say:
“It is extremely disappointing that the BMA have chosen to take industrial action which helps no-one.”
The BMA previously cancelled 3 strikes in December 2015 to re-enter talks with the government. Several weeks of negotiations took place in the lead up to Christmas and then they reconvened for another attempt.
Dr Mark Porter of the BMA says:
“We sincerely regret the disruption that industrial action will cause, but junior doctors have been left with no option. It is because the government’s proposals would be bad for patient care as well as junior doctors in the long-term that we are taking this stand.”
Katherine Murphy, of the Patients Association, added the news was “extremely disappointing” and “once again patients are being caught in the middle of this bitter dispute.”
Despite the failure to reach a deal, both sides have already confirmed they want to keep talking ahead of the proposed strike.
Moosa -Duke Solicitors hope that a quick resolution can be reached and disruption to patient services is kept to a minimum.
If you or a loved one has suffered as a result of poor care from a medical professional, please feel free to call us for a no obligation discussion on 0116 254 7456.