I don't normally get too vocal about politics but I wanted to write a very quick piece to voice my opinions and show my support for all the junior doctors in the UK who are currently under a great deal of pressure and stress during this difficult time with the goverments enforcement of a new 7 day working contract.
As an NHS employee I see the many difficulties it faces with my own eyes, mainly the over whelming pressure on its resources and staff, all of them, and the negative effect this has on the people that matter the most, the patients.
This is a truly worrying time for the NHS that was founded in 1948 by Aneurin Bevan with three simple principles…
- That it meets the needs of everyone
- That it be free at the point of delivery
- That it be based on clinical need, not the ability to pay
Never have these principles been under so much threat as they are today with the shamful and shambolic handling of the NHS by this goverment and the Health Secertary Jeremy Hunt.
This is Jeremy Hunt… (sigh)
If you're British then I'm sure you have seen, heard, and read lots about the current situation and the governments plans for a new working contract it is going to enforce onto junior doctors in August, and the subsequent strikes they have taken in protest. Now there are and have been many differing and conflicting views and opinions thrown around making it very hard, if not impossible to work out what really is going on, who to trust, and who to blame.
Now I don't want to go through all of this rhetoric, spin, and accusations as I will be here for ever and a day, and to be honest I don't fully understand it all. But I will say this, if you think that a group of people as hard working, as selfless, and as caring as junior doctors are taking this action just because they don't want to work weekends, or for a few extra quid in their pay packets, you are deluded. And don't mistake the term 'junior' doctor has anything to do with their age or years of experience, rather it applies to all doctors below consultant grade.
Anyway I work with 'junior' doctors very closely, and I can tell you that these people are not work shy, money grabbing, or uncaring. They all already work long arduous hours (including weekends), in some difficult conditions, in some high pressure environments, for very little thanks, and for a wage that an average London tube driver can earn with a fraction of the effort, training, skills or sacrifice, and they do this day in day out without complaint.
So when these people tell you that this new contract forces an already over stretched, and over strained work force even more and now places patients at risk, believe them, and support them.
Regardless of what the media, spin doctors and quangos say about this situation, it's simply not about money or weekend working.
This is about pushing the hardest working staff in the country to breaking point. This is about putting patients lives at risk. This is about pushing the NHS into privatisation, and eventually breaking it's three key principles that have stood the test of time since 1948.
Don't let the NHS fail… Support our doctors
Thanks for reading
PS: this YouTube video by Cassette Boy on the current issue is simply brilliant