This week the BMA’s UK Junior Doctors Committee announced the result of their ballot on junior doctor industrial action in England. Almost 37,000 votes were cast and 98% of those voted in favour of industrial action.
As surgical leaders, we acknowledge that the decision to take part in industrial action will not have been taken lightly by any doctor. This result reflects the real difficulties and challenges facing junior doctors in delivering the best possible care.
Surgical trainees represent a critical part of the NHS. Alongside other NHS staff, they have worked on the NHS frontline throughout the pandemic, and still continue to do so. Workforce and recruitment problems, combined with the pressures of rising clinical demand, are leaving many doctors in training demoralised, burnt out and struggling to work in an overstretched and underfunded service. Their access to training opportunities is also compromised in many hospitals. We are deeply concerned that these challenges, coupled with increased personal financial pressures, have consequently left them feeling undervalued.
We will support our members in their decision, for their overall well-being, the sustainability of services, including training, and ultimately, for the benefit of patients.
The government and the BMA’s UK Junior Doctors Committee should come to a swift agreement that recognises the value that junior doctors bring to the NHS, minimises the impact on services and reassures patients that they will continue to receive high levels of care.
Royal College of Surgeons of England
Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh
Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow
Federation of Surgical Specialty Associations (FSSA)
Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland (ASGBI)
British Association of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons (BAOMS)
British Association of Otorhinolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery (ENTUK)
British Association of Paediatric Surgeons (BAPS)
British Association of Plastic Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS)
British Association of Urological Surgeons (BAUS)
British Orthopaedic Association (BOA)
Society for Cardiothoracic Surgery in Great Britain and Ireland (SCTS)
Society of British Neurological Surgeons (SBNS)
The Vascular Society of Great Britain and Ireland (Vascular Society)
Association of Surgeons in Training (ASiT)
ASGBI Moynihan Academy (ASGBI MA)
Association of Otolaryngologists in Training (AOT)
BAUS Section of Trainees (BSoT)
British Orthopaedic Trainees Association (BOTA)
British Neurosurgical Trainees’ Association (BNTA)
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Fellows in Training (OMFS FiT)
Plastic Surgery Trainee Association (PLASTA)
Society for Cardiothoracic Surgery in Great Britain and Ireland Trainees
Trainees in Paediatric Surgery (TriPS)