Harlow health bosses issue appeal as Junior Doctors strike gets underway

News / Thu 27th Jun 2024 at 02:22pm

THE doctors’ union the British Medical Association has started a further five days of junior doctors strike action, after national pay negotiations failed to reach agreement.

Local NHS leaders across Hertfordshire and west Essex are appealing for the public’s support as they manage this period of strike action, which will cause significant disruption to local services.

The strike started at 7am today (Thursday 27 June) and ends on 7am on Tuesday 2 July.

Dr Jane Halpin, Chief Executive of Hertfordshire and West Essex Integrated Care Board (ICB) said: “This strike action will present many challenges for patients, carers, our hospitals, and some of our GP practices too. With many doctors expected to be on strike, hospitals will not be able to run as normal and services will be working under immense pressure.

“Even with the careful planning that is taking place, both routine and emergency care are likely to be significantly affected. To prioritise life-saving emergency treatment, hospitals may have to postpone some non-urgent operations, treatments and routine appointments. Anyone whose treatment is going to be cancelled will be contacted directly.

“During the last strikes, some people came to A&E with symptoms that should have been seen and treated elsewhere. If you come to A&E with a minor condition or illness during the strike, you are likely to face a very long wait and may be sent away to an alternative service A&E is always there for people with serious injuries and life-threatening emergencies, like heart attacks, strokes, or breathing difficulties, so in a genuine medical emergency call 999. There are many sources of advice about when to call 999, including on the NHS website. If you call 999 for an ambulance when you don’t need one, you could endanger the life of another person.

“NHS 111 is there 24 hours a day if you or a family member are unwell and need urgent medical help or advice on where to go. We have more staff in the NHS 111 service to cover this challenging week, so please use 111 online or by phone if you cannot manage symptoms yourself at home. Don’t forget the mental health support on offer via NHS 111 – by choosing option 2 when you get through. 

“Thank you for your understanding and support at this challenging time.”
Top tips for Hertfordshire and west Essex residents
If you have a pre-booked appointment at hospital or a clinic, attend as scheduled, unless you have been contacted and your appointment has been postponed.

GP services will be open as normal so please contact your practice as usual on their online form on their website. 

If you need urgent health help, use NHS 111 online (www.111.nhs.uk) or call 111. Your symptoms will be assessed, and you will be provided with healthcare advice or an appointment to see a doctor or nurse if this is needed. NHS 111 can also send an ambulance and can book an appointment for you in some services like urgent treatment centres.

If you are in a mental health crisis, call NHS 111 and get straight through to mental health help by selecting option 2. 

Feeling a bit under the weather? The NHS website has lots of advice to help you to look after yourself when you have minor symptoms. There is also information about what is a serious medical emergency: When to call 999 – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

You can find a list of pharmacies or Urgent Care Centres that are open out of hours by visiting www.nhs.uk and using the NHS service finder on the front page of the website.

Do not visit anyone in a hospital or care home if you have recently had diarrhoea or vomiting. Stomach bugs are easily spread, make already ill people very seriously unwell, and can lead to whole hospital wards being closed. Please wait 48 hours after your last bout of sickness or diarrhoea before visiting anyone who is vulnerable.
Information on these services and self-help advice can be found at: https://www.hertsandwestessex.ics.nhs.uk/your-health-and-care/
You can also get information on local health services by following local NHS organisations on social media:

Hertfordshire and West Essex ICB @HWEICB
West Hertfordshire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust @westhertsnhs
Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust @NHSHarlow
East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust @enherts
Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust @hctnhs
Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust @hpft_nhs
Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust @eputnhs
HUC (the organisation which runs NHS 111) @HUCHealthcare

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11 Comments for Harlow health bosses issue appeal as Junior Doctors strike gets underway:

gary roberts
2024-06-27 15:16:47

My support for the "junior" doctors' is total. Mr Vince join the picket line and gain some credibility as a prospective Labour MP. Will he? No. Having just had a serious procedure on the NHS in an NHS hospital with an exceptional surgeon I will do anything to support them. But even if that had not happened my support for the NHS and all the staff is total and has been since I was three years of age. If the Labour party do win next week they should stop the rhetoric and start doing what they say on the NHS.

2024-06-27 19:39:23

Gary. Pleased you was looked after by NHS. I agree with most of what you say , except the part about Chris Vince on the picket line. If Labour get in power in Harlow , and he pickets with the Junior doctors, it will cause what bothers me and that is , the unions will be Labour's puppet masters and will bring the country to its knees. Labour will not be able to do anything without the okay of the unions. Labour and the unions will bankrupt Britain.

David Forman
2024-06-28 05:40:24

As a former Secretary of Harlow Trades Union Council I can assure Woody that the unions will have very little influence over a Labour government. This is illustrated by a watered down New Deal for Workers that has so many caveats in it to make it useless. Sharon Graham, general secretary of Unite, described the New Deal as a "Swiss cheese" because it had so many holes.

David Forman
2024-06-28 05:45:58

Gary Roberts is right to question Chris Vince. Mr Vince was happy to attend picket lines when Jeremy Corbyn was leader of the Labour Party. Given that Mr Vince upset Sir Keir Starmer by failing to win control of Harlow Council, I'm sure Mr Vince will be doing his upmost to ingratiate himself with Starmer. Mr Vince will prove to be a Starmtrooper, a phrase coined by the Spectator magazine.

Iain Lindsay
2024-06-28 06:09:13

It won't be long before Labour will be taxing the private sector to fund extortionate pay rises for members of their paymasters unions who already have generous salaries and pensions. It will be just the beginning of bankrupting the country in typical Labour fashion.

2024-06-28 06:56:22

Iain, we're in far far more debt now than since Labour were last in charge, in fact since the 60's. I wish people wouldn't keep telling tired old lies without looking for some facts first.

2024-06-29 06:12:48

The Junior doctors will strike a lot longer than 5 days at a time once Labour are in.

2024-06-29 06:15:54

I agree the country is in debt , Why? Because £2500 a month furlough. Its payback time .

Iain Lindsay
2024-06-29 07:50:42

Trace; The article was about junior doctors going on strike, not national debt. Try making pertinent statements regarding the issue being reported. The country has been in debt for decades under Governments of all stripes and it won't change until we get a Government that can actually attract and stimulate companies to manufacture and sell products and move away from an economy based purely on services and the Square Mile.

James Gamble
2024-06-29 09:57:10

Woody has a crystal ball it appears. We have had several strikes by both doctors and nurses over the last two years, something we have never experienced before. If Labour get in as predicted at least they are prepared to talk to these people. £15 an hour is hardly enough for people with the skills and dedication of our junior doctors.

2024-06-30 05:17:03

James . I don't need a crystal ball . The unions pump enough money into Labour , so what the unions want they will get , including allowed to legally strike . Remember the winter of discontent. Well if Labour get in welcome to mk2.

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