Harrogate junior doctors: ‘We are prepared to continue to strike’
Last updated Jun 14, 2023
Antony Antypas, one of the junior doctors based at Harrogate District Hospital on strike.

Junior doctors on strike in Harrogate have pledged to continue to stage walk outs until the government comes to the negotiating table.

Members of the British Medical Association are striking for 72 hours as of today after negotiations with ministers over a pay increase broke down.

Doctors based at Harrogate District Hospital set up a picket line on Wetherby Road this morning.

The move comes as the BMA described the latest government pay offer of a 5% increase for junior doctors as “in no way credible”.

It has called for a 35% pay hike in order to meet successive years of below inflation rises.

Junior doctors from the British Medical Association on strike in Harrogate.

Junior doctors from the British Medical Association on strike in Harrogate.

Antony Antypas, one of the junior doctors on strike in Harrogate this morning, said some of his colleagues were considering leaving the profession due to pay.

He said:

“We have got to a position where we have lost a lot of our pay.

“There are staff that want to leave their job and go somewhere else. But we do not want to get to that point.”

He added that staff were “constantly fire fighting” against operation waiting lists and emergency department waiting times. He called for a better offer for junior doctors in order to “retain staff”.

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Mr Antypas, who studied at University of Nottingham and is a second year foundation doctor at Harrogate hospital, added that junior doctors would be “prepared to continue to strike” until their demands are met.

The move comes as officials at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust has urged patients to attend appointments as normal unless contacted to reschedule.

However, the trust warned that some outpatient appointments may be cancelled at short notice during the three-day strike.

A spokesperson said:

“We understand this may cause our patients and their families to worry about how services will be delivered during this period. The safety of our patients is our primary concern and we have developed plans for the proposed action and its impact on our services, patients and staff. We are working hard to prioritise resources to protect emergency treatment, critical care, neonatal care, maternity, and trauma, and ensure we prioritise patients who have waited the longest for elective care and cancer surgery.

“To prioritise emergency care and to keep all patients safe, we are having to make changes to some of our outpatient and theatre services on the days of industrial action. We are aiming to keep as many outpatient appointments and elective activity across the three days of strike action, but there is a risk that these may be cancelled at short notice.

“Patients should continue to attend appointments as planned unless contacted to reschedule.”