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  • Writer's pictureHealthwatch West Berkshire

Junior Doctors Strike -

NHS In Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and West Berkshire are preparing for the impact of further industrial action by junior doctors

People can help by using 111 Online to get best service for their needs, ensuring prescriptions up to date and looking out for vulnerable family and friends.

The Junior Doctors strike action is set to be the biggest and most disruptive strike to date. It starts at 7am on Tuesday 11 April and ends on Saturday 15 April at 7am. It also follows a long bank holiday weekend when some services are limited, and many staff are on planned leave.

Junior doctors make up about half of the NHS doctors and some services will therefore be disrupted and we are therefore taking measures to prioritise resources to protect:

  • emergency treatment

  • critical care

  • maternity

  • neonatal care

  • trauma

Steve McManus, Chief Executive of the NHS In Bucks, Oxfordshire and West Berkshire, said,

“We do not underestimate the impact this industrial action will have on our patients. Some non-emergency operations and other appointments will be rearranged. NHS staff working during the industrial action will be working very hard in hospitals, community teams, GP and primary care services and pharmacies to keep people safe and respond to their needs. The scale and length of this industrial action means that we cannot fully mitigate the impact for patients".

“Emergencies, critical care, maternity, trauma and neonatal care safe staffing will be our absolute priority, but it will involve the NHS working together across Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire to ensure we are there for people at their moment of need. We are grateful to all our colleagues working during this time to keep services running and patients safe.

“We urge our communities to prepare for the long Easter weekend by ordering repeat prescriptions and stocking up on essential medicines in advance, and over both the bank holiday and strike week to look out for vulnerable friends and family.

“During Industrial Action please continue to access Primary Care as normal and keep appointments unless the NHS advises you not to. Please make best use of the NHS by using NHS 111 Online, using the NHS App or speaking to your local pharmacist first for health advice. Think about which NHS service can best meet your needs. “

Dr Rachael de Caux, Chief Medical Officer for the NHS in Bucks, Oxfordshire and Berkshire West and Consultant in Emergency Medicine said:

“If you have an emergency or life-threatening need, continue to come to the Emergency Department. We expect them to be incredibly busy in the days ahead and if your need is not an emergency you can expect to wait a very long time or be redirected to a more appropriate service. NHS 111 Online remains the best place to help you get to the part of the NHS that can best respond to your needs.”

Please remember

  • Continue to access Primary Care as normal

  • Visit NHS 111 Online to get the right service for your needs

  • Make sure prescriptions are up to date before the bank holiday weekend

  • Stay safe and look out for vulnerable family and friends

  • Keep appointments unless you are contacted by the NHS with alternative arrangements

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