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First-ever joint strikes for junior doctors and consultants announced

Published on: 31 Aug 2023

Junior doctors have announced a fresh round of strike action that will coincide with walkouts by hospital consultants.

The two groups of medics will take joint action on 20 September, as well as three days between 2 and 4 October. The British Medical Association said it would be the first-ever joint strike action between the groups of doctors. 

It comes after the BMA secured a new mandate for strikes by junior doctors for a further six months, with 98 per cent voting in favour of continuing action, on a 71 per cent turnout. The previous vote in February saw the same majority, on a turnout of 77 per cent.

Junior doctors will also strike on 21 and 22 September, which are non-strike days for consultants.

Consultants have already announced their strike dates.

During the joint strikes, junior doctors and consultants will provide “Christmas Day” cover during the planned industrial action, meaning minimal emergency services will remain open but elective care will not.

The walkouts also coincide with the annual Conservative party conference, which is being held in Manchester this year from 1 until 4 October.

This will be the sixth and seventh rounds of industrial action taken by junior doctors since March, while it will be the third and fourth among consultants since July.

On X (formerly known as Twitter), health and social care secretary Steve Barclay said the announcement was “extremely disappointing”, adding: “I know it will weigh heavily on the minds of their NHS colleagues and patients – both of whom are shouldering the brunt of the BMA’s relentless and now co-ordinated strike action.”