Five reasons to support the junior doctors

As junior doctors start another 2-day strike, NHS campaigners explain why they support them. It's about truth, safety, and the future of our NHS. Get down to a picket line today!

Keep Our
6 April 2016
junior doctors picket line.jpg

Image: Junior doctors picket line. Rights: Roger Blackwell/Flickr.

1The government has misrepresented data and continues to lie about the 7-day NHS. A 7-day, 24-hour emergency NHS already exists. Our staffing levels are already at the brink. We will damage care if we stretch 5 days of elective (non-emergency services) into 7 days. We need more funding, more doctors, more nurses, more porters, more lab staff and other healthcare professionals. 

2The safeguards built into this new contract are inadequate. There is a financial incentive for hospitals to overwork already tired doctors, as it is cheaper to do this and pay fines than hire extra staff (locums) to cover the large staffing gaps which currently exist in our hospitals. This is leading to burn out and doctors leaving the NHS. 

3The government are not being truthful when they say doctors are getting a pay rise of 13.5%. They are not. Most hospital (non-consultant) doctors who do any out of hours on-calls will lose out between 10-20 %. Working more unsocial hours and getting a pay cut is demoralising for anyone. Please remember that Juniors are trainee doctors and do not get paid as much as the consultants. 

4. The gaps in the rota for doctors and nurses are reaching dangerous levels. Doctors and nurses are being asked to do more and more every day because the government are not employing more staff. Frequently on a night shift a doctor is being asked to do the work of three doctors and also being asked to act as a more senior doctor. This is dangerous and puts our loved ones at risk.

5. Striking Junior Doctors are defending a high-quality NHS – an NHS run by well-supported staff who are able to give of their best when caring for you. The Government will attack the jobs of other NHS staff next: underfunding core NHS services and privatising lucrative areas. 

Join many other NHS campaigners showing their support for junior doctors on their picket line, you can find your nearest one here (scroll down).

Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals

To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

The NHS is a precious public institution. Any involvement from private companies should be open to public scrutiny and debate. We need more transparency during this pandemic – not less.

By adding my name to this campaign, I authorise openDemocracy and Foxglove to keep me updated about their important work.

Had enough of ‘alternative facts’? openDemocracy is different Join the conversation: get our weekly email


We encourage anyone to comment, please consult the oD commenting guidelines if you have any questions.
Audio available Bookmark Check Language Close Comments Download Facebook Link Email Newsletter Newsletter Play Print Share Twitter Youtube Search Instagram WhatsApp yourData