Junior doctors in England will strike for three days in December, the British Medical Association (BMA) announced, subject to the outcome of the ballot of their members – which closes on 18 November.
This will include two days of “full walkouts” including emergency and non-emergency care.
On Tuesday 1 December from 8am to Wednesday 2 December at 8am there will be a walkout for junior doctors in emergency care only. However, from 8am to 5pm on Tuesday 8 December and Wednesday 16 December there will be a full walkout.
In an email to all members in England, BMA council chair Mark Porter writes: “Our dispute is with the government and our ballot for industrial action is a last resort in the face of their continued intransigence.”
According to the BMA, the reason for announcing the strike dates before the ballot has closed was to minimise the impact on patients and fellow doctors, and allow employers time to prepare.
Porter said: “It sounds like an oxymoron when talking about industrial action, but we genuinely want to minimise any disruption to other NHS staff and, above all, to patients.”
In response Danny Mortimer, chief executive of NHS Employers said: “We know this will have a huge impact on patient care and we urge the BMA to avoid putting patients and the NHS in this position by returning to talks with us. Proposed strike action, as outlined by the BMA would be hugely regrettable.”