Junior doctors reject new contract deal

PUBLISHED: 13:08 05 July 2016 | UPDATED: 13:11 05 July 2016

File photo dated 26/04/16 of junior doctors protesting outside the Department of Health in Whitehall

File photo dated 26/04/16 of junior doctors protesting outside the Department of Health in Whitehall

PA/Press Association Images

Junior doctors and medical students in England, who are members of the British Medical Association, have rejected a new contract agreement with the government.

British Medical Association members voted 58 per cent to 42pc against accepting the new deal.

More than 37,700 members of the British Medical Association (BMA) were sent ballot papers and 68pc took part.

Junior doctors, including those working for the NHS trust which runs King George Hospital and Queen’s Hospital, may now be forced to accept a new contract without agreement or further negotiation, as Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt announced back in February.

Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust (BHRUT) would be obliged to impose the contract on all junior doctors due to its non-foundation status.

Unlike standard NHS hospitals, foundation trusts can negotiate the contracts of doctors with their own hospital boards rather than with central government directly.

Now Johann Malawana, the chair of the junior doctors committee at the British Medical Association, has resigned after he encouraged members to accept the new contract.

In a statement he said the decision was made with regret, but that it would be “dishonourable and untenable” to continue.

He said: “The result of the vote is clear, and the government must respect the informed decision junior doctors have made.

“Any new contract will affect a generation of doctors working for the NHS in England, so it is vital that it has the confidence of the profession.” “This government has made a catalogue of errors when it comes to listening to the population.”

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