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GPs to take industrial action

19th January 2012

Doctors have voiced concerns over plans to change their pensions and have warned the government that they would be prepared to take some form of industrial action over the issue.

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The British Medical Association say two thirds of its members are opposed to moves by the government to ask them to pay in more money.

The BMA surveyed 130,000 doctors and 46,000 replied of which 84% said the government’s proposals should be rejected, 63% said they would be prepared to take industrial action to force changes to the proposals and 36% of doctors aged 50 and over said they would retire early if the changes came in.

A decision on whether to hold a ballot over action will be taken in February. In the meantime, GP leaders have written to the government formally rejecting the plans, which they say would mean doctors having to work longer - possibly until they were 70 - before they retired.

Dr Hamish Meldrum, chairman of the BMA Council, said: “The strength and scale of feeling among doctors is abundantly clear - they feel let down and betrayed, and for many this is the final straw.

“Now on top of this, they are facing wholesale changes to their pension scheme, which was radically overhauled less than four years ago and is actually delivering a positive cash flow to the Treasury.”

But Health Secretary Andrew Lansley said there was no justification for doctors to strike and described their pension scheme as excellent and amongst the best available anywhere.

 

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