Jeremy Hunt has absolutely no right to complain about “extreme” or “unwarranted” action by anybody else.
Let us remember that he is prepared to negotiate on only one of 23 points in his planned new pay scheme for junior doctors – a plan that he intends to impose, rather than trying to reach agreement with those whose remuneration and working conditions he intends to degrade.
Yes, strike action in the NHS is unwelcome, but the only reason this is happening is the intractability of the Secretary of State for Health.
If you – or anybody you know – feel the need to blame anybody for this, blame the right man.
Blame Jeremy Hunt.
Jeremy Hunt has condemned what he described as “extreme action” after the British Medical Association (BMA) said junior doctors would take strike action on three days in December.
The health secretary is gearing up for a fierce battle with the profession, despite NHS bosses and leaders of the medical profession warning him that a protracted dispute will seriously disrupt services just when they are under the most pressure.
The BMA said junior doctors would walk out on 1, 8 and 16 December over a new contract Hunt is threatening to impose on them if, as expected, their ongoing ballot approves industrial action.
“Threatening extreme action is totally unwarranted and will harm vulnerable patients. Refusing to talk to a government that wants to improve weekend care for patients and reduce doctors’ hours can only damage the NHS,” said Hunt on Thursday.
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