Young doctors reject the request of the health minister to end the 72-hour strike

Young doctors at the British Medical Association (BMA) have refused to call off next week’s three-day strike amid a bitter dispute over pay.

They were responding to Health Secretary Steve Barclay’s invitation to attend formal pay talks, which were extended late Friday night as the planned industrial action was called off.

The BMA junior doctors were disappointed with the “so late offer of talks with conditions that are completely unacceptable for our members”.

In a letter to Mr Barclay on Saturday, the co-chairs of the BMA’s Junior Physicians Committee, Dr. Vivek Trivedi and Dr. Robert Laurenson: “We remain open to discussions with the Government, anytime, anywhere, to bring this dispute to a quick resolution and restore the salaries that young doctors have lost.

“We would encourage you to reconsider the preconditions that are currently preventing talks from taking place.

“As you have known for more than two weeks, our strikes start on Monday. And you also know, until we have a credible offer, we can’t turn them down.”

They also described Mr Barclay’s 11th-hour offer as “a feeble attempt to stop us, kicking the can out into the street, delaying an actually meaningful conversation”.

The health secretary said he had proposed negotiations “on the same basis that other health unions accepted” after planned industrial action by tens of thousands of key workers was suspended when the government agreed to discuss pay for this year.

Unions representing emergency workers, physiotherapists, nurses and midwives have been in talks with the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) since Tuesday.

However, no BMA junior doctors, who are expected to leave the house for 72 hours on Monday, were involved in the talks.

Mr Barclay tweeted on Friday night: “I have written to @BMA_JuniorDocs inviting them to formal salary talks on the same basis that other health unions have accepted, including the cancellation of next week’s strike.

“Let’s have a constructive dialogue to make the NHS a better place to work and ensure we’re providing the care patients need.”

BMA junior doctors noted that the health minister did not attend the talks on Friday.

Almost 40,000 young doctors voted in the BMA vote for a labor dispute.

NHS Providers chief executive Sir Julian Hartley said: “It is deeply disappointing that, even at this late stage, there is no real prospect of meaningful talks between the Government and the British Medical Association to avert the forthcoming industrial dispute.

“This is a setback for the NHS. The people who will suffer will be patients who are subject to even more disruption and staff whose morale will take another hit.”

dr Laurenson and Dr. Trivedi told The Times that doctors are prepared to continue striking until they get a “full pay recovery” – a 35% increase – and that future strikes could last longer than 72 hours.

They also pledged to re-elect members if their demand for wages to be restored to 2008 levels is not met when the union’s current six-month strike mandate expires in August.

Sir Julian Hartley, chief executive of NHS Providers, Matthew Taylor, chief executive of NHS Confederation, and Will Warburton, chief executive of the Shelford Group, called for “a redoubling of efforts to engage in negotiations and avoid industrial action”. from 10 of the largest NHS Hospital Trusts for teaching and research in England.

In a joint letter to the Daily Telegraph on Saturday, they said there had been “encouraging signs of government and union commitment to resolving differences and deterring further industrial action in the NHS” but “unfortunately we are not seeing a similar dialogue with doctors”.

They said they understood doctors’ frustration “that their salaries have lagged inflation in recent years while their workload has increased” but said it was not too late “for all sides to see the damage.” realize what a strike will do”.

NHS England has expressed concern about the impact of the strikes on emergency care and efforts to tackle waiting lists.

Chief Strategy Officer Chris Hopson told a summit last week that he expected the strikes to have “larger and broader coverage” than any previous strike.

On Thursday, the government said negotiations with other health unions had been constructive and would continue until next week.

Four of the unions involved, GMB, Unison, Unite and the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, canceled the strike action to facilitate ongoing talks.

The Royal College of Nursing also avoided strikes in early March when it began collective bargaining with the government.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *