It’s a basic truth that doctors spend years in training to work in a profession in which their overall purpose and mission is to heal people and, for the more serious cases, save lives.
The general public hold doctors in the high regard that they should, with the knowledge that most doctors are dedicated and committed healthcare professionals who, every day of their lives, help people in need. They clearly deserve our respect, recognition and acknowledgement.
So what on earth is Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt thinking when he imposes a new contract that no-one wants and junior doctors have been striking over? With both sides accusing the other of being unreasonable and not listening to each other, it would appear that from the public’s perception at least, Mr Hunt has greatly misused his position of power in order to bully junior doctors into submission.
Tawhid Juneja, MD of Primary Care Professionals says “Although we focus on Primary Care, our business is immersed in healthcare and doctors form 80% of our business. We are already aware of the acute shortage of GPs throughout the UK and this kind of situation will only make an already bad situation far far worse.
“We now have an entire profession that is demoralised and this does not create any incentives to attract students to want to train as doctors. The basis of this whole problem is not about money, such unhappiness never is based on salary alone. Of course everyone wants a 24/7 seven day week NHS but when there aren’t enough skilled people within the profession to make that work, forcing junior doctors into un safe work practices will not solve the problem.
“We work very closely with the Royal College of General Practitioners, which completely supports junior doctors. Dr Maureen Baker, the Chair of the RCGPs, said that they are also shocked and dismayed at the Government’s decision to impose a contract on our dedicated and committed junior doctors. Imposing a contract, in its current form, is asking junior doctors – the future of our NHS – to work under conditions in which they neither feel valued nor able to deliver safe patient care.
“We completely agree with Dr Baker that by imposing a contract it will undoubtedly impair efforts to recruit thousands of the additional doctors we so desperately need into the NHS over the coming years in order to keep the health service sustainable.”