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Trust chiefs speak out: NHS ‘sleepwalking’ into ‘dangerous’ junior doctors strike

Ministers and NHS England have not sufficiently warned the public of the risk to patient harm posed by next week’s junior doctors strike, some of the NHS’s most senior trust chief executives have warned.

The senior leaders contacted HSJ with their concerns after a group call between trust leaders and NHSE bosses on Thursday.

The chief executives and medical directors, who spoke to HSJ on condition of anonymity, made a series of robust criticisms which focussed on the lack of awareness of danger presented by the junior doctor’s industrial action, a lack of thorough communication of that to the public, and the insistence that trusts negotiate strike agreement with the British Medical Association at a local level.

One comment on the chat function stated: ”Public awareness of the impact of this strike seems far lower than for e.g. the ambulance strike, but from a an acute trust perspective this will have a much bigger impact on patient care and safety. Junior doctors’ are not newly qualified students - they are the backbone of day to day medical management in our services. I am concerned we might be giving false assurance about the quality of service we can offer next week.”

Read full story (paywalled)

Source: HSJ, 10 March 2023


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