• Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Junior doctors in England determined to continue strikes for better pay

Following the collapse of pay negotiations with the government on Monday (22) without a resolution, the doctors’ union said the strikes will take place from June 13 to 17

By: Kimberly Rodrigues

Junior doctors in England, represented by the British Medical Association (BMA), have announced plans to hold additional strikes in June.

Following the collapse of pay negotiations with the government on Monday (22) without a resolution, the doctors’ union said the strikes will take place from June 13 to 17.

The strikes would potentially place a further strain on the state-run health service, NHS.

The BMA which represents approximately 45,000 junior doctors, has said in a statement that if the government does not alter its position, strikes may continue “throughout the summer.”

Amidst rising inflation, tens of thousands of junior doctors have conducted two rounds of walkouts this year, advocating for wage increases that align with the inflation rate.

However, the government argues that granting such pay rises would exacerbate inflation, leading to higher interest rates and mortgage costs.

According to the BMA, junior doctors are defined as healthcare professionals who have completed clinical training and have up to eight years of experience as hospital doctors or up to three years in general practice. They work under the guidance and supervision of senior doctors.

The ongoing strikes within the NHS have caused significant disruptions to patient care, as healthcare workers, including nurses, ambulance workers, and others, have participated in walkouts. These strikes have resulted in the cancellation of numerous appointments, further exacerbating the challenges faced by millions of patients awaiting treatment.

In response to the latest strike plan, a government spokesperson expressed concerns over the significant disruptions it would cause for patients and the added pressure it would place on other NHS staff. Additionally, the spokesperson said that the government was prepared to continue negotiations if the strikes were called off.

While the BMA said the government’s latest pay offer of a 5% increase for 2023/24 was not a credible offer since it was “nowhere near addressing pay erosion over the last 15 years.”

(Reuters)

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