I used to blame the BMA, but the DH holds all the aces, unless we are prepared to walk out completely (‘Dr Laurence Buckman: “Ultimately, the Government holds all the cards”’, pulsetoday.co.uk/tbi-buckman). Take-home pay per consultation here in Northern Ireland is just £2. That is how cheap we have become. We are only high earners because of the hours we work and number of patients seen.
I used to work 80-hour weekends with three or four hours’ sleep, at 30p an hour. The NHS has always been wrong – and I put up with it. We need to correct the mangy way we are treated but that means leaving, just like dentists did. The next generation must join the BMA and take a tougher line: we are better than £2.
Dr Josef Kuriacose, Moneymore, County Derry