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At the heart of general practice since 1960

30. Dr Jeeves Wijesuriya

Junior doctors’ leader

After months of talks, this ST2 GP trainee announced in May that the BMA would be reopening junior doctor contract negotiations with the Government via a review of the 2016 contract. Former health secretary Jeremy Hunt unilaterally imposed the contract in July 2016, despite a majority of doctors rejecting it.

He says: ‘We will be continuing to learn from our previous experiences and work hard to improve conditions, trainees lives and the sustainability of health service.’

Trainees were reportedly still concerned about the effectiveness of the role of ‘guardian of safe working hours’, as well as the lack of a pay increase between ST3 and ST8, despite an increase in responsibility and defence fees.

Dr Wijesuriya, who has been at the helm of the BMA Junior Doctors Committee for a year and a half, adds: ‘Trainees are finding working in a system under pressure, that does not provide the flexibility, training and employment practices needed, increasingly difficult, with more than ever experiencing burnout and leaving training programmes.

‘Much of our work seeks to restore the humanity to the machinery of training programmes.’

Why influential:

He’s about to lead trainees into another contract negotiation

What he says:

‘I can be guilty of never really switching off. I know that’s probably a pretty common trait in a GP.’

Random fact:

His uncle has the worst international test cricket bowling average of all time but he still aspires to be half as good.

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