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#GPnews: BMA rejects calls to cancel junior doctor strikes

14:30 New research has revealed that more than two thirds of doctors have been 'left with no choice but to ration care' for some treatments, ITV News reports

A survey of 1,000 doctors found that some services and treatments including mental health care for children, hip and knee replacements and cancer drugs are 'being restricted in a bid to save the NHS money.' 

The vast majority of doctors that were surveyed agreed that further rationing of treatments is inevitable – as the 'demand for care increases and the NHS's finances continue to be stretched.' 

12:05 Elsewhere today, a new review has found that frail elderly people have been left to look after themselves because government-funded care has been scaled back. 

The number of over-65s being helped by councils had fallen by a quarter in the four years to 2014, the BBC reports

The review, published the King’s Fund and Nuffield Trust, highlights the growing numbers of elderly people being left with no care or having to pay for it themselves.

It also found that spending on care by councils had fallen by 25% in real terms in the five years to 2015, to £5.1bn – and the numbers getting help from their council with care had fallen by 26% to 850,000 in the four years up to 2014.

But the Department of Health said: 'We understand the social care system is under pressure, and this government is committed to ensuring those in old age throughout the country can get affordable and dignified care.'

9:45 The BMA has confirmed that the planned five-day strikes by junior doctors in England will still go ahead despite calls for them to be shortened or called off all together. 

The BMA’s council of last night decided to continue backing the planned walkouts – despite concerns that it will cause disruption to hospitals and consequently put patient safety at risk, the Guardian reports. 

Members of the BMA council last night debated suggestions to reduce the duration of the strikes, call them off, or to undertake a new ballot of England’s 54,000 doctors below the level of consultant – but decided to go ahead with the strikes. 

Three five-day strikes will take place in England from October to December. 

Readers' comments (2)

  • a lot of people (public, government, media, nhs bodies) are having hysterics over the fact that the strikes are on and are going on and on about patient safety and juniors are to blame. i don't think the BMA thought 'just for fun we will hold the most significant strikes in the NHS history'. they would have thought this through and the strikes are a consequence of the pressure that the NHS is under. that pressure has been caused by the very same people who are moaning about it. what they can't understand is if juniors leave there won't be 5 day strikes there will 365 day strikes in effect. it's time for the public (that includes everyone) to make a decision - either have a fixed budget for the NHS and if so don't be surprised if services are cut OR decide what you want and fund it properly.

    good luck juniors.

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  • Vinci Ho

    I concur.

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