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'Final opportunity' to reach settlement as junior doctor talks extended

Junior doctor contract talks will carry on for three more days, as the parties have failed to reach a settlement this week.

Following all-out strikes by junior doctors last month, including withdrawal of emergency care, health secretary Jeremy Hunt paused the imposition of the contract to hold an extra five days of negotiations.

But a statement from Acas, the employer advice organisation leading the talks between NHS Employers and the BMA, today said talks will now continue until Wednesday next week.

Acas chairman Sir Brendan Barber warned that this was ’a strictly time limited extension’ representing ’a final opportunity to find an agreement’ to resolve the ’difficult dispute’.

He said: ’The talks have been conducted in a constructive and positive atmosphere. In my judgement some real progress has been made to address outstanding issues.

’I reached the view however, in the last 24 hours, that a limited amount of additional time would be needed to give the process a chance of reaching a successful conclusion. I proposed to the secretary of state, and to the BMA, that the talks should be continued up until next Wednesday.’

While talks continue, the Government has agreed not to impose the junior doctor contract and the BMA has agreed not to stage further industrial action.

Readers' comments (13)

  • Junior Doctors, whatever stage you are look at an exit strategy from this debacle. GP is dead in the water (certainly when it comes to being a GP with autonomy and time for your patients - if you enjoy filling in forms and admin - and squeezing in the 60 odd patients into the day as well then go for your life, and as far as I am aware being a Consultant now is just as joyous. There a re many countries who would welcome you, give you a wonderful climate, amazing opportunities and a real quality of life with respect and job satisfaction and you only have one life, this misery isn't worth ruining it.
    Good luck to you all but trust nothing Hunt or his cronies are spouting and that includes the Royal Colleges who are all waiting for their gongs.

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  • JH is protected by the PM himself and feels almighty and untouchable. As long as the political will for privatization among the rich boys continues to prevail, the poor UK population can only think of migrating and leaving these sons of lords to treat themselves.

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  • Well done to BMA and Dr Malawana for sticking with their values and instincts and not being fooled by Agent Hunt.
    Can I humbly request Dr Malawana and the BMA, once ur through with this process, to show the GPC and RCGP how to grow a pair and fight for the GPs, as u are for to junior doctors and the greater good of the NHS and country

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  • The BMA seems to agree to Hunt’s contract on a seven-day services for the price of five. For the reason of BMA’s arguments on Saturday pay and rota designs, etc. should be irrelevant. The bottom line is there is no need for a full 7 day NHS.

    Somebody needs to tell Cameron and Hunt – we do not need a 7 day NHS – period!

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  • John Glasspool

    This is organized by the BMA. Therefore the juniors will be sold down the river. It's the BMA, remember?

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  • please reject it otherwise you will be back here in a few years time.

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  • Let's hope that if or when these talks fail, that ACAS doesn't blame the doctors.

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  • Vinci Ho

    From a purely political angle , when the 'Mexican Standoff' has become so intense and somebody was really in the last moment of pulling the trigger, a 'stepping down platform' is usually provided for at least one side to back down (but without losing face). The call by the all the colleges to pause was supposed to do that. Our young colleagues have relatively less to lose , less baggage anyway. My feeling is the deadline for Agent Hunt is actually time before the EU referendum .......

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  • Remember BMAs, RCGPs and LMCs are parasites who only suck subscriptions - don't trust anybody or they'll sell their mother's to get more cash.

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  • Vinci Ho

    You really don't know until reaching the finishing line and it is so easily right 'down the wire', hence , no giving up , young Padawans .
    Cannot remember the last I was so f***ing sad and actually sat down to watch the whole Eurovision Song Contest from beginning to the end. Interesting that they changed the scoring system that the jury's votes only accounted for 50% of the final score while the public votes coming at the end virtually changed the results completely . Australia (yes, Australia is now part of Eurovision Contest!!)was leading all the way with Ukraine second after the jury's votes and Russia was in fact public's favourite with most votes . Typically , it was Ukraine versus Russia down to the last minute and the former got just enough public votes to go above Australia to win the show. The song typically is about Crimea but in a different time frame in 1944(song title). In fact , would like to find a copy of the documentary film ,Winter On Fire , from last year to watch.....
    As I said , people loved underdogs. Even the EU referendum has become a panic attack for the holding government due to these Leave campaigners which in a way , are less resourced up against not just the Stay camp but also other influences from US president , IMF and Bank of England. Of course , the difference here is we are still looking at just the Tories which are deeply divided as a 'tribe' . The Labour leader seems to be playing the card as such whichever side wins this referendum , he still holds the political argument that everything was down to the Conservative party (He said 'vote leave' in 2020 , leave is for the Tories, cunning!)
    So , play the cards , young colleagues and be patient until the last minute......

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