Havering doctors taking part in national strike next week
11:20 14 June 2012
Havering doctors will be among those taking part in a national strike over pensions next week.
Around 400 doctors in the borough, out of a total of 1,000, were balloted by the British Medical Association (BMA) over the action.
Nationally, 63 per cent of GPs voted in favour of striking over changes to pension schemes. Local figures were not available.
The one-day strike, which takes place on Thursday (June 21), will see doctors suspending all non-urgent care.
A spokesman for Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust (BHRUT), which runs Queen’s Hospital, Romford, said that inpatient, urgent and cancer care won’t be affected by the action.
She added that this will have an impact on some non-urgent care and that the trust is contacting patients who will be affected, and is asking that other patients attend as normal.
“Unfortunately, we cannot rule out delays for non-urgent patients and we may need to reschedule some patients at short notice,” she said.
A spokesman for NHS North East London and the City said that the group of primary care trusts has contingency plans in place.
The BMA says that the action – the first since 1975 – is being taken because the government is making changes to pensions which are sustainable, and being funded by employees – not taxpayers.
But Hornchurch GP, Timothy Bland, said: “I don’t think this is the right time to start an open dispute with the government because the NHS is under serious threat from the Health and Social Care Bill and I think everyone in healthcare should be pulling together to help the NHS.”