NHS England update on industrial action by Junior Doctors

NHS England has issued an update on the industrial action by junior doctors that is taking place today (Wednesday Feb 10).

NHS trusts have reported today that 43 per cent [1] of junior doctors (out of a possible 26,000 working on a typical day) have reported for duty on the day shift.

Combining junior doctors, other doctors and consultants, the data shows 72 per cent of the total trust workforce in work today.

Over the weekend, NHS England said it was estimated that the following elective procedures have been cancelled as a result of the industrial action:

  • Inpatient – 1150, including 1036 on day of action (10 February)
  • Day case – 1734, including 1634 on day of action (10 February) [2]

Dr Anne Rainsberry, National Incident Director for NHS England, said: “It is deeply regrettable that this strike has disrupted care for thousands of patients at the most pressurised time of year and we apologise to anyone affected.  It’s a tough day but the NHS is pulling out all the stops, with senior doctors and nurses often stepping in to provide cover.

“We are actively monitoring the situation across the country and the impact of the action is broadly in line with what we were expecting. NHS trusts are now working hard to reschedule cancelled tests, appointments and operations as soon as is possible.

“We will continue to work closely with hospitals and other NHS providers across the country to ensure that contingency plans are in place and that they can safely provide the urgent and emergency services needed.

“If people need medical help during the industrial action and it’s not an emergency they should consider NHS Choices, visit their local pharmacy – or call their GP or NHS 111 for more serious matters. If their condition is an emergency or life-threatening they should call 999 as usual or go to A&E”.

[1] This is not saying that 43% have chosen to work despite having a strike mandate as a proportion of the 43% would have been rostered to emergency services and therefore have turned up for duty.

[2] This is based on information collected prior to the strike (on 2/3 February) asking about the effect of the strike across a number of days pre and post-strike in addition to the day of the strike (between 3 and 17 February).