Operations at Stoke Mandeville Hospital are disrupted today (Tuesday) as junior doctors strike in a dispute with the government over a new contract.
Bucks Healthcare NHS Trust said it ‘has tried and tested plans to ensure that all urgent and emergency services at our hospitals continue to run as normal throughout the period of industrial action’.
It said the following plan will be in operation today (Tuesday):
> Urgent and emergency care services (including A&E, cardiac and stroke, critical care and maternity services) will continue to operate as usual.
> Consultants, along with those junior doctors who have not opted to take industrial action, will cover the duties usually carried out by junior doctors on wards to ensure the safety of inpatients.
> The trust will try to avoid cancelling activity unnecessarily. Any patients who may have their appointments or planned operations rescheduled have been contacted individually and alternative appointments offered.
The British Medical Association has announced it will also strike on January 26 and February 10.
In a statement the health trust said: “We are doing all we can to avoid cancelling appointments or planned procedures unnecessarily.
“Should any appointments or procedures need to be rescheduled patients will be contacted directly by the Trust to inform them of the changes and offered alternative dates. This could unfortunately be at short notice.
“Senior managers and clinicians within the trust have been putting plans in place in order to maintain safe and compassionate care for all our patients, and to keep disruption of our services to a minimum.
“We apologise in advance for any inconvenience which might be caused to patients due to circumstances beyond our control.
“We take this opportunity to remind people of the alternative options available to them to avoid making a trip to A&E unnecessarily. Those who need medical help or advice can consult NHS Choices, call NHS111 or visit their GP or local pharmacy.
“The trust will communicate further information to patients and the public as and when we have assessed the implications of the further walk-outs planned for future dates.”
Junior doctors are providing emergency care only between 8am today and 8am Wednesday. It plans to hold a similar strike on January 26, but this time lasting 48 hours. On February 10 there will be a full withdrawal of labour between 8am and 5pm.
Anyone requiring further information, should call the PALS team on 01296 316042.