Patient care at risk: Junior doctors' pay dispute intensifies in the UK
Patient care at risk: Junior...
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Patient care at risk: Junior doctors' pay dispute intensifies in the UK

7 April 2023
2 min.
Patient care at risk: Junior doctors' pay dispute intensifies in the UK

Unpacking the junior doctors' pay dispute

The pay dispute between the British government and the BMA over junior doctors' pay has intensified. The government has demanded that the BMA cancels their planned strike before they can negotiate. This stance raises concerns of disruptions to patient care in England next week.

The BMA had previously suggested that the strike could be suspended if Health Secretary Steve Barclay made a "credible" offer. However, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has held firm that negotiations will only take place if the strike is called off. The BMA has responded by insisting that a credible offer addressing pay concerns could prevent the strikes from happening.

Pay dispute history and current situation

The ongoing pay dispute between the British government and the British Medical Association (BMA) has been making headlines, as junior doctors demand a significant pay increase of 35%. However, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has stated that the BMA's demand is deemed unreasonable and may lead to some junior doctors receiving a substantial pay rise exceeding £20,000.

Impact on patient care

With the most significant strikes in a decade looming, healthcare providers are on high alert as patient care hangs in the balance. Scheduled to commence right after the Easter bank holiday weekend, the planned four-day strikes will begin at 6.59 am on Tuesday and continue until 6.59 am on Saturday. The NHS Confederation has expressed concerns about the safety of patients, and healthcare leaders are working tirelessly to ensure that emergency and life-saving care can be delivered safely. Nevertheless, the extent of coverage they will be able to secure from other professionals to fill critical shifts remains uncertain.

Call to action

Health leaders urge the government and BMA to do everything in their power to call off the strikes and to communicate urgently with the public about the situation. It's essential that people who need healthcare understand what is available and at stake.

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Alena Potapova

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