News

12.08.16

Junior doctor rolling strike action ‘will achieve little or nothing’

Junior doctors are being warned that striking “achieves little or nothing” as their new leader within the BMA, Ellen McCourt, gears them up for a potential “rolling programme of escalated industrial action” starting as early as next month.

McCourt, who chairs the BMA’s junior doctors committee (JDC), said in an email to members that the union has “simply seen nothing” when it comes to issues which need to be resolved by the government surrounding the problematic junior doctor contract.

“I have repeatedly told the secretary of state what needs to be addressed and, crucially, by when. We have seen some last-minute movement from Health Education England (HEE) on whistleblowing protections, and from NHS leaders with regard to the role of the Guardian of Safe Working, but the government remains persistently silent,” she continued.

“In light of this, the JDC Executive has voted to reject the proposed new contract in full and to call for formal re-negotiations on all of your concerns. In response to the government’s silence, JDC Exec has today made a formal request for a special meeting of BMA Council to authorise a rolling programme of escalated industrial action beginning in early September.

“Forcing a contract on junior doctors in which they don’t have confidence, that they don’t feel is good for their patients or themselves, is not something they can accept.”

But Daniel Mortimer, chief executive of NHS Employers, said further strike action would only place pressure on “already stretched teams and services”.

“Industrial action achieves little or nothing, but places pressure on already stretched teams and services and causes worry, distress and disruption for patients, carers and their families,” he said. “Over the last two months we have been talking with the JDC and have, along with the Department of Health and others, responded positively to their concerns regarding the Guardian Role and whistleblowing.

“Employers were hopeful that the continued positive engagement on other important topics – such as deployment, flexibility in training, additional training for those returning from career breaks, costs of training, mutual recognition of syllabus, study leave and the gender pay gap in medicine – were a sign of how serious employers, HEE and the Department of Health were about honouring the agreements reached with the BMA in November, February and May.”

McCourt, who was appointed in July after previous leader Dr Johann Malawana resigned after junior doctors voted 58% against a revised contract, had always promised to continue to fight the contract imposition.

Other bodies had also urged health secretary Jeremy Hunt not to impose the revised deal, including the Royal College of Paediatrics, whose leader argued the contract was particularly damaging because NHS services are already “running on empty”.

(Top image c. Andrew Matthews)

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become an NHE columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

latest news

View all News

comment

NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

23/09/2019NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

Reason to celebrate as NHS says watching rugby can be good for your mental ... more >
Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >

editor's comment

25/09/2017A hotbed of innovation

This edition of NHE comes hot on the heels of this year’s NHS Expo which, once again, proved to be a huge success at Manchester Central. A number of announcements were made during the event, with the health secretary naming the second wave of NHS digital pioneers, or ‘fast followers’, which follow the initial global digital exemplars who were revealed at the same show 12 months earlier.  Jeremy Hunt also stated that by the end of 2018 – the 70th birthday... read more >

last word

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad, president of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), sits down with National Health Executive as part of our Last Word Q&A series. Would you talk us throu more > more last word articles >

interviews

NHS dreams come true for Teesside domestic

17/09/2019NHS dreams come true for Teesside domestic

Over 20 years ago, a Teesside hospital cleaner put down her mop and took st... more >

the scalpel's daily blog

Providers are delivering – and here’s how

09/10/2019Providers are delivering – and here’s how

It has been a challenging few years for healthcare providers, yet they have continued to deliver high quality care despite the conditions. Adam Brimelow, director of comm... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

healthcare events

events calendar

back

October 2019

forward
mon tue wed thu fri sat sun
30 1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31 1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10

featured articles

View all News