Warning of disruption to NHS services as junior doctors set to strike - The Evesham Observer

Warning of disruption to NHS services as junior doctors set to strike

Evesham Editorial 19th Dec, 2023   0

HEALTH chiefs have warned the NHS in Worcestershire will be ‘significantly impacted’ by the junior doctors strike.

The first of two planned walkouts begins tomorrow (December 20) with a three-day strike. A second six-day action is planned for January 3 to January 9.

Ahead of the industrial action, healthcare leaders are asking county residents to think carefully about the services they may need.

During strike action the NHS will prioritise resources to protect emergency treatment, critical care, neonatal care, and trauma.

Priority will be given to patients who have waited the longest for elective care and cancer surgery.

Appointments will only be cancelled where it is necessary and will be rescheduled immediately, where possible.

Anyone with an appointment is asked to attend unless contacted.

NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire’s Chief Medical Officer Dr Will Taylor said:

“We are working closely with our partners to make sure patients can access the care they need, during industrial action.

NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day everyday online at 111.nhs.uk or 111 for urgent, non life-threatening medical needs.

Trained advisers can direct people to the best possible care. This includes arranging an out-of-hours GP appointment or an appointment time to attend A&E or a Minor Injury Unit.

Dr Christine Blanshard, Chief Medical Officer, Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust said:

“With strikes taking place in the lead-up to Christmas, we are expecting services to be under increased pressure.

“Our Emergency Department team will be working hard prioritising patients with life or limb threatening injury and illness.

“Patients whose condition is less serious may be asked to seek treatment elsewhere or face an extremely long wait.

“Pharmacists can also help with a range of common conditions and minor injuries.

“Local people can help reduce pressures on services by only using 999 and A&E for genuine life-threatening emergencies

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