Use healthcare services wisely during Consultant and Junior Doctor industrial action

Dr Jo Beahan, Medical Director at The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust, is urging people to use healthcare services wisely during planned industrial action by Consultants and Junior Doctors.

The entrance of Rotherham Hospital

The first ever coordinated strike will see Consultants providing Christmas Day cover on Tuesday 19 and Wednesday 20 September. Junior Doctors will provide Christmas Day cover on Wednesday 20 September, followed by a full walkout from Thursday until the industrial action ends at 7am on Saturday 23 September.

Christmas Day cover will mean many planned appointments will be rescheduled. Patients impacted will be contacted directly. Emergency care will be available, but it’s vital that people use these services wisely.

The NHS is working hard to prioritise resources to protect emergency treatment, critical care, neonatal care, maternity, and trauma, and ensure patients who have waited the longest for elective care and cancer surgery are prioritised. 

Dr Jo Beahan said: “Emergency care is available for those most in need. Patient safety and quality of care remains our main priority throughout the periods of industrial action.

“We are working hard to ensure our patients continue to receive the care they need, when they need it. However, the Urgent and Emergency Care Centre is likely to be very busy.

“The Urgent and Emergency Care Centre and 999 should only be used in life or limb threatening situations.

“Anybody who needs urgent care should still use our services. However, if urgent care is not needed, I strongly encourage the public to use alternatives such as NHS 111, GPs and local pharmacists.”

Further coordinated industrial action by Consultants and Junior Doctors is planned for early October.