• SUPPORT YOUR JUNIOR DOCTORS

     

     

    The battle for a safe and fair contract is ongoing.

     

    We must not fail to protect our patients, our profession and our NHS.

     

     

  • The Government announced after February's strike that they will impose their contract on all junior doctors in August 2016.

    Despite announcing imposition, the contract has not yet been written or published.

     

    No one knows if it is safe, if it will improve services, if it is affordable or sustainable.

    The government have admitted they do not have the information needed to prove these reasonable and essential steps have been taken.

     

    A contract imposition is undemocratic and deeply unfair.

    Imposing an unplanned, uncosted, unmodelled and unfunded one is dangerous.

  • Doctors on strike

    • No doctor wants to strike. It goes against our ethos. We chose to become doctors and work for the NHS because we want to care for, treat and help our patients. Doctors feel they have been forced into this unprecedented position by this government's actions. We have tried diplomacy, we have tried debate. We have done all we can to shout out for help and get our message across but sadly we are not listened to.
    • After postponing the December strikes and working hard over Christmas to negotiate with the government for a safe contract, the doctors Union (the BMA) announced in January that regrettably the government had refused to offer a safe and sustainable contract for doctors that protected our patients and our working practices.
    • With heavy hearts doctors undertook strike action for 24 hours in January, 24 hours in February and 48 hours in March. These strikes were 'emergency cover only' which means that all emergency departments (A+E, Intensive Care, Maternity, Children's and Cancer services) were unaffected by the strike, as doctors worked as normal in those units.
    • These 3 episodes of strike action went ahead without any reported incidents thanks to the hard work of the junior doctors who continued to offer all emergency cover, with the support of our senior colleagues who have supported us and stood by us throughout this dispute.
    • The next strike action is currently scheduled for April 6th-8th (48 hours) and April 26th-28th (48 hours) - These will continue to be the same model as before, ALL EMERGENCY DEPARTMENTS will be UNAFFECTED as doctors working in those units will be continuing to work as usual.

     

    DO NOT DELAY OR HESITATE IN SEEKING HELP IF YOU ARE UNWELL

  • Independent Legal Action

    Doctors have begun a legal challenge against the imposition of a contract we believe is unsafe.

    We are challenging the government to prove that their plans are safe, well planned, appropriately funded and staffed. They need to prove that they have made decisions reasonably and legally.

     

    We believe fundamentally that a contract for doctors must be agreed, not imposed, and must above all else be SAFE for patients and NHS staff. This is the only way to make sure your NHS is safe and sustainable for your future.

     

    Follow us on Facebook: JustHealth

    Follow us on Twitter: @JustHealth2016

    Email us on: JustHealth2016@gmail.com

    JustHealth - fundraising for justice

    Junior doctors and NHS staff have instructed lawyers to begin investigations into Judicial Review proceedings.

    "We are asking for funding to take an independent legal action started by doctors but ultimately involving all interested parties. We are challenging the imposition of an unplanned and dangerous contract which will affect patient wellbeing and safety.

    We ask for your help to raise £25,000 initially to start to investigate a judicial review process and are aiming to establish a further working case fund of £100,000.  This is an all or nothing target and without your support we cannot get this case off the ground."

    JustHealth - this is about the future of the NHS

    Why this matters to you

    This is about the future of your health service and your country.

    The imminent imposition of dangerous contracts affects everybody who works for or uses the NHS. Its immediate and lasting impact reaches further than doctors; it will have a knock on effect on all NHS staff, patients and their families.
    The NHS is already understaffed.  The government want a new contract to fulfil their manifesto pledge of a "7-Day" NHS, but they have failed to acknowledge the need for the necessary extra staffing and resources required to make their changes safe.  They have not planned or prepared for the devastating consequences. As a result there will be serious gaps in the care provided to patients.  Staff will find themselves under even more pressure, their mental and physical health will be impacted. This imposed contract will endanger all lives in the NHS.

    JustHealth - the court decides if the imposed contract decisions are reasonable and legal

    What we are doing

    Judicial review is a legal process which allows the high court to investigate issues and decide whether decisions made by the Secretary of State for Health, and employers, are reasonable and have the consequences that are intended.

    Talks between the BMA, NHS Employers and the Health Secretary have broken down and a new contract is due to be enforced by the government from August 2016. The Health Secretary has under pressure said an Equality Impact Assessment will be carried out and published this month but we are not confident this will result in any significant change. 

    We know these are only the start of widespread changes to the health service that will affect all staff working in the NHS. It is junior doctors today and other NHS staff tomorrow. We cannot stand by without a proper review of the impact on patient safety by such actions.

    The only avenue left to get to the bottom of the issues surrounding the lack of planning prior to the imposition of the dangerous doctors’ contracts is to ask for the High Court to review the decision making process and decision to impose contracts.

    Bindmans LLP, legendary in the area of judicial review has agreed to act for us to bring this claim. It is our hope of a just resolution. At the moment nobody is listening to genuine serious safety concerns. We refuse to be bullied into submission further.

    Morale is affected and there are many doctors and other who may leave the NHS if the working conditions are not reasonable and if we cannot fulfil our commitment to our service users – patients come first.

    JustHealth - we need your support

    How your donation will help

    This funding will enable our lawyers to study the documents about years of negotiations, research whether patient safety will be affected, and test the arguments put by the employers and Health Secretary to consider whether the process has been fair and reasonable and the result end would be justified.

    At this stage we don’t know what the final costs may be. This will depend on how strongly the issues are disputed, whether other parties decide to support our challenge, how lengthy and complex the research will be, how many hearings will be needed and how long the final hearing is. The case has to be taken in stages and our lawyers will keep under review whether the case has good prospects. We may need to come back to you for further support, but if we do, we will explain why and what is needed. We will be transparent where our employers and the Health secretary has not been. Things have reached an impasse and there is no other obvious way out of this deadlock. An independent review by judges looking at the dispute calmly with all the evidence before them is best placed to judge the fairness of our respective positions.

     

  • Why this is a fight to save your NHS

    This contract is UNSAFE for both patients and doctors:

    • Doctors will be tired, and we know tired doctor make mistakes
    • Doctors will be leaving the NHS, meaning longer waiting times for you
    • The cost of your care will go up as the NHS will rely on expensive temporary staff
    • The government is gambling with your lives

    ^

    The '6 Minute' Video explains our concerns.

     

    The video also explains why the term 'Junior Doctor' is misleading, as they may have up to 15 years experience working for the NHS.

  • Contract changes

    The government's manifesto soundbite to 'deliver a 7 day NHS' means they're imposing a new contract. 

     

    They claim will allow more routine services at weekends & that it will improve patient safety (weekend mortality), but we know routine services are not life and death situations. 

    They claim they are reducing doctors' hours and yet that more doctors will work more weekends to provide increased services, but we know there is no funding for additional doctors. 

    We disagree with these plans, we believe this is UNSAFE.

     

    Here's a breakdown of the changes they've announced in November offer - the latest 'offer' that they've said is final has not actually been published so we can't analyse the details.

    7 DAYS - NOW

    • We already have 24/7 Emergency and Urgent Care delivered by the NHS
    • All Junior doctors work hard to provide this service
    • Routine (non-urgent)  services are mostly offered just Monday - Friday
    • All doctors are committed to looking at ways to improve all services and especially weekend emergency care

    7 DAYS - NEW CONTRACT

    • Routine services will be offered on the weekend
    • No extra doctors or funding is provided to deliver this
    • Doctors will be stretched too thin
    • There is no evidence that increasing routine care to the weekend improves patient safety

    SAFETY - NOW

    • If doctors are working way beyond their contracted hours the hospital trusts are fined
    • This penalty is implemented through a rota monitoring system
    • Doctors feel this system works well to prevent the back to back 90 hour weeks that doctors used to work before this system was in place
    • On average a doctor work 48 hours per week, but a maximum of 91 hours in any single week to allow for shift patterns
    • Doctors working long hours get tired, and tired doctors make mistakes 

    SAFETY - NEW CONTRACT

    • Despite asking for a "safeguard system" to be written into the new contracts to ensure that doctors aren't working unsafe hours - the government have refused
    • This leaves doctors open to exploitation by their employers and being too tired to safely make decisions
    • Doctors will have to "whistle-blow" if they think they're working unsafe hours 
    • The new contract says the maximum hours that can be worked in a single week will be reduced to 72 - but there is no way for this to be enforced
    • This is like reducing the speed limit on the road, whilst at the same time removing speed cameras and fines

    HOURS - NOW

    • Hours outside  7am-7pm Monday to Friday are considered unsocial
    • These hours are paid at a premium rates
    • This rewards those doctors working in jobs such as A&E that have the most unsocial hours
    • This fairly rewards doctors that work the most gruelling patterns of work

    HOURS - NEW CONTRACT

    • To provide routine care at the weekend, the Government want to rebrand Saturday a normal working day
    • They are also saying that weekday unsocial hours should only start at 10pm
    • To compensate for the loss of premium pay, the base rate is being increased by 11%
    • Doctors working mostly social hours will receive a PAY RISE
    • Doctors working in specialities that do the most unsocial hours such as Anaesthetics and A&E will see a PAY CUT
    • We are worried the doctors receiving a pay cut are in specialties where there is already understaffing, and more doctors will leave the NHS

    TRAINING - NOW

    • Junior doctors are training to become experts in their chosen field - be it surgery, general practice, medicine
    • This requires supervised work where a  senior consultant teaches the junior doctor skills
    • Not only must they do clinical work, but they must also attend courses, and study for exams
    • Due to current under-staffing and budget cuts, trainees are finding it difficult to attend their courses and get the teaching that they need

    TRAINING - NEW CONTRACT

    • The same number of doctors will be spread more thinly across the week
    • It will be even harder for doctors to get time away from their clinical work to learn the skills they need to be good doctors
    • This means patients will be treated by doctors with less knowledge and skills

    PAY PROGRESSION - NOW

     

    • Trainees still get their pay increments even if they take time out of their routine training path to develop extra skills in research and teaching
    • This means the pay scales are awarded on the basis of 'time served' working
    • Junior doctors have made outstanding scientific breakthroughs in areas such as Cancer research, and Diabetes to name just a few

    PAY PROGRESSION - NEW CONTRACT

    • Pay scales will only progress at a particular stage of training, regardless of what other skills you bring or contributions you are making to the NHS
    • This penalises doctors who delay their training to pursue other vital skills and contribute to the NHS via research, teaching and volunteering
    • This means the increasing knowledge, experience and skills gained during this time is not recognised or valued
  • Frequently Asked Questions

    What is a 'junior doctor'?

    Anyone still in training to become a specialist

    The term 'junior doctor' is incredibly misleading, it includes:

    • All qualified doctors are 'Junior' until they become a consultant or GP
    • Up to half of doctors in an NHS hospital may be 'junior'
    • This can take from 5 to 15 years of training AFTER university
    • This is like calling every worker in a company a junior except the board of directions, or every child in school a junior until the last year of sixth form

    Will this give us a 7-day NHS?

    Not really

    To understand the '7-day' debate you need to understand that there are two different and separate parts to healthcare:

     

    Emergency services (unplanned visits to hospital, unexpected admissions, accidents and emergencies) are already provided 24hrs a day, 7 days a week. Currently the same number of doctors are on-call for emergencies at any given moment day or night. Changing the contract won't change this.

     

    Elective services (non-emergency, planned appointments and procedures) are staffed according to levels of workload and are spread across the week Monday-Friday. The numbers of doctors will vary to make sure each operating theatre, each clinic, each ward in covered as needed.

     

    So for emergency care, nothing will change.

    For elective care hospitals will afford to get more junior doctors doing routine work over the weekend but juniors can not do any of this alone: we need more consultants, more nurses, radiographers, physios, therapists, secretaries, ward clerks, porters, cleaners, kitchen staff etc etc.

    This is an increase in services of 40%, but with no more money and no more staff to achieve it.

    Conclusion: This won't work. There's no such thing as a free lunch. Nor a free hospital. If you want a service that no country on earth has ever managed to provide in human history; you've got to pay for it to make it happen.

    Wouldn't it be nice to have all services 24/7?

    Not really

    People think it might be nice to have access to whatever we want, whenever we want it. Doctor's don't disagree.

    In a time and age when people demand instant access and prioritise convenience over requirements, it would be great to be able to provide that service...

    BUT the government has run pilot programs up and down the country in GP surgeries and hospital clinics offering appointments over the weekend. The results have shown that patients don't book appointments when they'd rather be with their families, and that half of the booked appointments never actually turned up on the day. This is an extremely inefficient and expensive way to run a service. The NHS doesn't have money to burn.

    It turns out this sort of 'non-urgent service whenever we like' is a dream which in reality isn't required nor affordable.

    Do more people die on weekends?

    Not really

    The published study that Mr Hunt has misquoted time and again showed an increased risk of death for patients admitted on Friday-Monday inclusive (a four day weekend!). The conclusion of this research was that this so-called 'weekend effect' is identified around the world, even in healthcare systems completely different to the NHS. This suggests the cause for this apparent increased risk of death is something to do with the type of patients and cases who come in (maybe they're sicker, maybe they've waited too long, maybe its because there are more accidents?) - We are not sure. But there's no evidence it has anything to do with staffing levels. The paper's author said that to suggest the increased deaths were avoidable would be "rash and misleading". Mr Hunt is either mistaken in his analysis, or he's misleading the public. Neither is encouraging nor appropriate for a Minister for Health.

    Why should we fight against this contract?

    Because this contract is dangerous.

    It's a gamble with the NHS.

    As outlined above, this contract will push doctors to work increasingly longer hours as hospitals come under increasing pressure to get more and more 'efficient' and get 'more out of' their staff. We could see a return to 100-hour weeks being 'normal' and we know that this isn't safe for patients and its not safe for doctors either.

    Tired doctors make mistakes. Tired doctors don't work as fast. Tired doctors don't work as smart. Tired doctors can kill patients. Tired doctors have car accidents driving home, and tired doctors die.

     

    This contract isn't fair to doctors who will be forced to work more for less, under worse conditions and with less training. We are trainees, we are learning to become experts; when we are spread more thinly covering more ground we don't get to learn or train because there's no time or supervision.

    It isn't fair we won't be able to give our patients the care they need, deserve and that we desperately wish we could give.

  • Background Timeline

    It's important to understand the past, but it isn't simple - please bear with us and persevere!

    Oct 2013: Government calls for contract review

    In 2013 the junior doctor contracts were felt to be outdated and requiring review to be better able to meet future NHS demands

    • With the support of junior doctors who themselves had identified areas in which the contract could be improved and modernised, the BMA entered into contract negotiations with NHS Employers in October 2013; the first time the contracts were being reviewed in a decade.
    • In October 2014 negotiations stalled over concerns about safety for patients, and that doctors' welfare wasn't being effectiely considered by NHSE.
    • The government referred the negotiations to the Review Body on Doctors' and Dentists' Remuneration (DDRB), to make recommendations on changes which would enable the delivery of seven-day services.             ['Who are the DDRB?' section below]

    Feb 2014: BMA publishes views on 7-day services

    In February 2014 the BMA published a Parliamentary brief on the 'Implications of introducing seven-day working in the NHS'.

    This highlighted the following key points:

    • "The BMA believes patients should receive the same high quality of care every day.
    • There has to be robust modelling of what the impact of seven day working would be on staff numbers and working patterns or its financial implications. We would welcome a better understanding of which specialties would maximize impact on patient outcomes.
    • The BMA stands ready to work with all stakeholders to develop a model of seven day working for delivering high-quality, emergency, urgent and acute care to patients."

    They made their position clear, stating:

    "The BMA believes that urgent and emergency services should be the priority for investment to bring the standard up to the very best, every day. Care quality improvements should be the primary driver for seven-day service development for acutely ill patients. In the current and foreseeable economic climate, with huge financial pressure on the NHS, we do not believe resources could be freed up to deliver routine and elective services seven days a week."

     

    And made insightful remarks on what this might mean in practise:

    "Creating a seven-day service may place additional pressure on services during the rest of the week. The BMA is seeking reassurances that sufficient resources are provided so that pressure is not shifted from one part of the system to another"

     

    See full briefing document here.

    July 2015: DDRB report is published

    In July 2015 the report was published at the same time Mr Jeremy Hunt made the speech setting out his vision for the future of the NHS and an ultimatum to the medical profession to re-enter negotiations

    The BMA were given 6 weeks to analyze the DDRB report and make a decision to re-enter negotiations or face imposition of the new junior doctor contract.

     

    Mr Hunt's speech angered the medical profession when he accused consultants and the BMA of being the road-block to service improvement, but note this had nothing to do with junior doctors and their contracts:

     

    "Around 6,000 people lose their lives every year because we do not have a proper 7-day service in hospitals. You are 15% more likely to die if you are admitted on a Sunday compared to being admitted on a Wednesday. No one could possibly say that this was a system built around the needs of patients - and yet when I pointed this out to the BMA they told me to ‘get real.’ I simply say to the doctors’ union that I can give them 6,000 reasons why they, not I, need to ‘get real.’

    They are not remotely in touch with what their members actually believe. I have yet to meet a consultant who would be happy for their own family to be admitted on a weekend or would not prefer to get test results back more quickly for their own patients. Hospitals like Northumbria that have instituted 7-day working have seen staff morale transformed as a result. Timely consultant review when a patient is first admitted, access to key diagnostics, consultant-directed interventions, ongoing consultant review in high dependency areas, and proper assessment of mental health needs: I will not allow the BMA to be a road block to reforms that will save lives.

    There will now be 6 weeks to work with BMA union negotiators before a September decision point. But be in no doubt: if we can’t negotiate, we are ready to impose a new contract."

     

    The BMA statement at that time:

    "The BMA has been clear about our support for better seven-day services, with a focus on urgent and emergency care, but we do have concerns over how extended services will be paid for, staffed and what guarantees can be made to ensure current services do not suffer. Junior doctors already work to provide care 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There is no ability for junior doctors to opt out of weekend services."

     

    Read the DDRB report in full here.

    Sept 2015: JDC votes not to re-enter negotiations

    On 10th September the junior doctors committee took a vote after debating the issues and details in each of the 23 DDRB recommendations

    Junior doctors were informed that the government was unwilling to negotiate on 22 of the 23 DDRB recommendations which would make up the new contract.

    The BMA junior doctor committee (JDC) took the decision not to re-enter negotiations because "despite significant concerns raised... it was made clear that failure to accept those recommendations as the basis for talks would result in the government imposing a contract on junior doctors from August 2016."

     

    Junior doctors have been very clear we want to achieve a safe and fair negotiated settlement.

    The BMA have asked for the following assurances from the government to re-enter negotiations:

    • "Withdraw the threat of imposition
    • Proper hours safeguards protecting patients and their doctors
    • Proper recognition of unsocial hours as premium time
    • No disadvantage for those working unsocial hours compared to the current system
    • No disadvantage for those working less than full time and taking parental leave compared to the current system
    • Pay for all work done"

    Oct 2015: The imposition & negotiation stand off

    On October 8th Mr Hunt wrote to the BMA making reference to the junior doctors' concerns but refusing to give the concrete assurances the BMA requested

    The subsequent communications between Mr Hunt and the BMA JDC Chair Dr Johann Malawana have primarily been played out via the media.

     

    Junior doctors have never felt confident that Mr Hunt's verbal assurances and letters have provided the assurances required to accept the his proposals and so the BMA, no other options, began to prepare for a ballot on possible industrial action.

     

    The BMA's response on October 12th outlined their unaddressed concerns again and set out their unchanged position here.

    Nov 2015: Ballot for strike action

    The BMA have begun the ballot process and the deadline is Nov 18th

    Responding the letter from Jeremy Hunt, the BMA JDC's Dr Malawana said on October 28th:

    “It is encouraging that the health secretary has finally made a significant shift and recognised some of the concerns raised by junior doctors. However, it has taken the threat of industrial action and the sight of thousands of junior doctors taking to the streets to reach this point.

    “The BMA has been quite clear that the government must withdraw the threat of imposition of new contracts on junior doctors, the extensive preconditions to negotiations the Department of Health keep insisting on and provide junior doctors with the assurances they are demanding before re-entering negotiations. Today’s letter from the health secretary could be a step in the right direction. We look forward to seeing more of the detail that the health secretary has committed to providing in the coming few days.

    “After repeated attempts to conflate junior doctors’ legitimate concerns and the government’s rhetoric on seven-day services, it is positive that the health secretary has finally acknowledged what people across the country already know: that junior doctors already work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week up and down this country.”

     

    On the eve of the ballot opening, Nov 4th, the government finally publicised, via the media, its plans for the junior doctor contract and we were able to see the terms and conditions and pay calculations for the first time.

    Unfortunately, the these plans:

    1. did not address the concerns junior doctors had over patient safety
    2. the example rotas outlining future working patterns were considered badly designed and dangerous
    3. the online pay calculator made available by the DOH confirmed that the majority of current doctors and all future doctors would be facing significant pay cuts whilst concurrently being forced to work more antisocial hours.

    A concession was made for the most senior trainees, with offers of pay protection to prevent huge losses in pay, however as a body of professionals we are not willing to accept these terms and allow 'one generation to sell out the next' in this callous way.

     

    The ballot for industrial action went ahead.

    Dec 2015: Strikes planned, then postponed...

    With an overwhelming mandate for strike action, the BMA was bold to cancel them when the Government finally agreed to conciliatory talks

    The ballot in November was overwhelming.

     

    98% of doctors voted for strike action and plans were made for December strikes. On the same day as the ballot result was announced, the BMA invited the government to talk via ACAS, the mediation service.

     

    Mr Hunt the Minister for Health refused.

    7 days later on the night before the first strike the government agreed to return to talks and begin fair contract negotiations so the BMA called off the strikes at the 11th hour. The BMA hoped and believed the government was finally ready to start listening to doctors' concerns and willing to negotiate a safe and sustainable new contract.

     

    These talks lasted throughout Christmas and on the deadline of January 4th we heard the news that the BMA was unable to secure a safe and fair deal for doctors and patients. The offer from the government was unsafe and unsustainable for the NHS in the longer term.

     

    It was a very difficult decision for the BMA doctors to take, but strikes were once again announced for Jan 12th, 26th and Feb 10th.

     

    The government have asked for ACAS to step in again, however no agreement was reached. The strikes are set to go ahead.

    Discussions between the government and the BMA are ongoing.

    Jan 2016: Strikes back on, some again postponed

    Strikes were announced for 3 days in January and the BMA continued to ask for further negotiations to avoid any disruption to services

    The first doctors strike in over 40 years too place on January 12th - this was the first time in a generation that doctors were forced to take industrial action.

    • The strike format used was the 'emergency care model' which meant ALL EMERGENCY DEPARTMENTS REMAINED UNCHANGED.

    All emergency, urgent and cancer services continued to be staffed as normal with only routine, non-urgent work cancelled. This meant that no patients were put at any risk, and there were more services running safely on strike day than on a normal Sunday or Bank Holiday!

     

    There was not a single report of any bad outcomes or incidents on strike day, and the support from junior doctors for the BMA's ongoing industrial action plans was evident on the picket lines.

    Following more talks and ongoing negotiations, the BMA announced that they would postpone to following strike on Jan 26th in order to continue negotiating.

    Sadly these further talks did not achieve the necessary safeguards and terms that junior doctors required, so the next strike day was confirmed on Feb 10th.

    This strike day was the same model as the previous one, it was carried out safely and again there was not a single report of any bad outcomes or incidents for our patients. 

    Feb 2106: Imposition is announced, but of which contract?

    The government made a 'final offer' the night before the strike on Feb 10th and demanded a final answer in less than 24hours or imposition would be forced upon the junior doctors

    After the BMA said the January offer was unacceptable for doctors, the government and BMA continued their talks.

    The night before the Feb 10th strike, the government wrote to Dr Malawana with their final offer and demanded a response immediately.

    This offer was made without any details of the contract, as it is not actually written yet. 

    There was also no time allowed for review and analysis of their 'offer summary document' before the deadline, and doctors were on the picket lines that day.

    On Feb 11th, the morning after the second strike, Jeremy Hunt announced in Parliament that he would go ahead with imposition and there would be no further negotiations. 

     

    The BMA have continued to ask for fair negotiations and a chance to reach a safe and sustainable contract. 

    The BMA announced further strikes for March and April. These will continue to follow the previous format of offering ongoing emergency care - NEVER DELAY SEEKING HELP - WE ARE ALWAYS HERE FOR YOU IN YOUR NHS.

    What is the DDRB?

    DDRB is an advisory non-departmental public body, sponsored by the DOH

    The DDRB is the organisation which every year considers the pay for doctors holding posts in the NHS on nationally agreed terms. It was set up after the Royal Commission on Doctors' and Dentists' Remuneration in 1960 in order to protect medical professionals' living standards from "arbitrary government action".

     

    It makes its recommendations directly to the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for Health, and their equivalents in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

    The health departments, NHS Employers and the BMA send written evidence to the DDRB each September and October. The DDRB usually reports to the Prime Minister in December each year and the report is made public, with the government's decision, a few weeks later, for implementation on the following 1 April.


    For many years now they have recommended that doctors in the UK should receive a pay rise, yet the government have not taken those recommendations on board and acted upon them.
    This was reported by the Independent last year:

    "In his letter, Dr Porter said the BMA, which represents 153,000 doctors, would submit evidence to the DDRB regardless of the Government’s attempt to by-pass the pay review process.

    “This year, presumably for fear that you may not like its answer, you have elected not to ask the DDRB to make a recommendation on pay…” Dr Porter writes. “In the stroke of a pen, you have removed both the assurance against arbitrary government action [on pay] while inviting the very public dispute which the DDRB was designed to avoid.”

    A BMA source said the union was not yet considering a ballot for strike action.

    The source told The Independent: “The purpose of an independent review body is to ensure fairness and transparency in decisions on pay. [By ignoring the DDRB] the Government is making a total mockery of the independence of the pay review bodies and prevents them from working in a fair fashion for doctors, staff and patients.” "


    This year's task of reviewing and making recommendations on the junior doctor contract is something they were never set up to do, and was a task well outside their previous remit.

     

    The members are:

    • Professor Paul Curran (Chair)
    • Lucinda Bolton
    • John Glennie OBE
    • Alan Henry OBE
    • Professor Kevin Lee
    • Mehrunnisa Lalani
    • Professor James Malcomson
    • Nigel Turner OBE
  • How to help your doctors

    We need the public to support us.

    We are fighting for the safety of our patients, the integrity of our profession and for the future of the NHS!

    1) Support our independent legal action!

    While the BMA is fighting for doctors' rights and safety, we are fighting for our patients' rights and safety but holding the government to account through an independent legal challenge - they must prove they are doing the right thing in front of a Judge now

    Click here to read more and donate: https://www.crowdjustice.co.uk/case/nhs/

    2) Sign this petition!

    Public petition to be sent to the Department of Health

    We, the British public, disagree with the government's junior doctor contract imposition

    3) Write to your MP!

    Tell your MP why the NHS is important to you. Let them know what you think of the new junior doctor contract. Tell them what you want them to do for you and your NHS

    4) Sign this petition!

    Petition for cross-party control:

    The NHS shouldn't be a political football, the goalposts can't keep changing every 5 years, this is too important

  • Doctors of the NHS

    This campaign lets doctors share personal photos and stories from the frontline of the NHS

    Junior doctors began this page after being inspired by the famous photography movements called 'Humans of New York'

     

    Click on each photo to read the story behind it!

    Follow us on instagram: @dotnhs_

    Follow them on facebook: DOTNHS

  • Junior Doctor Campaigns

    Since this dispute began in Sept 2105, Junior Doctors have rallied together in support and solidarity in a way we have never imagined possible. There have been many grassroots campaigns and events, some of which have become so popular and effective they're achieved incredible things. Here are the highlights!

    WearYourNHS

    Vivienne Westwood supports Junior Doctors

    You can buy the campaign T-shirt, jumper and bag to support junior doctors.

    The proceeds go to health charities and funding the campaign.

    This campaign lets doctors share personal photos and stories from the frontline of the NHS

    Junior doctors began this page after being inspired by the famous photography movements called 'Humans of New York'

    The Lewisham Hospital Choir 

    They got to 2015 Christmas No.1 

    "The NHS faces a cruel winter ahead. Budget cuts, low staff morale, junior doctors balloting for industrial action, and hospitals up and down the country being classed as 'inadequate'. 

    We are closer than ever to that cliff edge, but we WILL NOT let the NHS fall."

    National Health Singers

    Our national NHS choir, singing at the pickets

    We started our choir to unite the British public with their NHS workers. We aim to empower EVERYONE to fight for their NHS. We’re singing for it’s survival and we need your help to raise awareness of the current threats to the NHS, whilst at the same time boosting morale, increasing positivity and ultimately protecting our National Health Service!"

  • Support the NHS Bill 2015

    "The NHS in England is being dismantled. Only a change to the law can stop the damage. Now more than ever.

    Thousands of us contacted candidates during the General Election to support the NHS Reinstatement Bill. This made a difference. So far 76 MPs support the Bill, and now we need to build support amongst MPs.

     

    The National Health Service has been one of the UK’s greatest achievements. For 65 years it has provided a cost effective, universal health service, free at the point of need to all people irrespective of their background, circumstance or ability to pay.

    Yet over the last 25 years, this founding vision has been slowly but surely eroded. The final blow was the Health and Social Care Act 2012, forcing a commercialised model on the NHS in England.

    We believe that campaigning to reinstate the founding vision is critical."

  • Thank you for helping us!

    To support our campaigns please consider making a donation to our crowdfunding account. 

    These funds will be used to pay for materials at campaign events, PR stunts and for getting more information to you; our patients and public!

    With many many thanks, your junior doctors.

     

     

  • Department of Reality

    Please share and help us get the message out: this contract is not safe and not good for patients!

    Follow them on Twitter for updates and opinions on the latest contract and NHS developments 

    @deptofreality

  • Doctors are fighting for their patients, their careers and the future of the NHS

    There are a number of events being planned all over the country by grassroots campaigners, groups of doctors in hospitals, and regional/national committees.

     

    One public campaign is 'Meet the Doctors' which means group of doctors in every city in the UK will be going out to your local high street or station to talk to the public, hand out leaflets and ask you to support us by signing a petition.

     

    Further details of future events will be shared shortly. 

     

     

     

  • Videos

    These key videos attempt to explain the issues in quick summaries, they are made by junior doctors who feel its important to let people know what's honestly happening & cut through the government's spin & rhetoric.

    Junior Doctor Contract

    What's going on?

    Junior Doctors

    Too tired to shout: why you need to speak up

    TED talk: Privatisation of the NHS

    18 minute talk on how the NHS has been dismantled, by Professor Allyson Pollock

    The NHS sell-off documentary

    Full length documentary on what's been happening to the NHS and why it's almost too late to save it... but there's still time if we stand and fight together!

    (Warning: 60 mins but incredibly important!)

    The government's handling of the NHS

    in 3 minutes

    A guide to the structure of the NHS

    6 minute video explaining the structure of the NHS following yet another top-down restructure.

  • Connect With Us & Share Our Cause

    We are a group of junior doctors who are keen to inform the public, discuss our concerns and debate the issues and we're happy to be contacted by the media to express our views on this rapidly evolving and emotive situation!

    juniordoctorcontract2015@gmail.com

    Join online action and debate on the #JustHealth page

    Follow @deptofreality 

    for some myth busting & spin correction

    Follow @dotnhs_ 

    for beautiful stories and photos from 'Doctors of the NHS'