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Doctors defend strike action

31st May 2012

Doctors have defended their decision to strike in an open letter to UK newspapers.

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The British Medical Association has stressed the decision to take such action for the first time in 40 years had not been taken lightly.

In a ballot of 104,000 members, the majority backed industrial action which will see them refuse all non-urgent care for 24 hours on June 21.

The letter, printed in the Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail and The Sun, stated: On that day, doctors will be in their usual workplaces but providing urgent and emergency care only", wrote the BMA.

“We will be postponing non-urgent cases and although this will be disruptive to the NHS, rest assured, doctors will be there when our patients need us most and our action will not impact on your safety.”

It added that the action was taken to ensure the voice of doctors was heard by the government in their fight for fair, not preferential, treatment over proposed pension changes.

The Royal College of Nursing has yet to decide what it will do following a ballot which rejected the planned changes but one where the turnout was low compared to the high turnout in the BMA vote.

Health Secretary Andrew Lansley said there would be little public sympathy with the BMA and pointed out that a new doctor joining the revised scheme could still expect a pension of £68,000 a year on retirement.

Dean Royles, director of NHS Employers, said doctors were anxious about changes to their pensions no-one wanted to see patients dragged into the argument.

 

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Anonymous

Thursday 31st May 2012 @ 14:22

It would be better if they not resort to this action; after all, theirs is a noble profession and monetary matters should only be secondary. However, there is a silver lining in that they will attend the urgent and emergency cases and have assured that their action will not impact on patients` safety.


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