Advice for patients during industrial action
The British Medical Association (BMA) has confirmed that its junior doctor members will take industrial action tomorrow (6 April) for 48 hours. Its members will provide emergency care only between 8am Wednesday 6 April to 8am Friday 8 April.
The NHS is working hard to ensure that as few patients as possible are affected by the industrial action planned during April 2016, but some services will need to change.
In Lambeth we have been liaising with our hospital trusts to determine the likely impact of the industrial action locally and to ensure the quality and safety of care is protected.
Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust expects to run all urgent and emergency services including A&E and maternity but are rescheduling some non-urgent operations and outpatient clinic appointments Consultants will cover the usual duties of junior doctors to ensure the safety of inpatients on hospital wards..
King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust has advised patients it will be postponing most non-urgent operations and outpatient appointments but will be providing a full urgent and emergency care service.
You can find out more on the hospitals' websites:
We also have the following advice for patients:
This information explains how you can access NHS services over this period. It is especially important if you have a long-term health condition or you look after people in vulnerable groups – such as the elderly and young children – that you know what to do on the days of the industrial action.
Planned operations/procedures and outpatients appointments
If you have a planned operation/procedure or outpatient appointment on a d ay when industrial action is taking place, your hospital will contact you if it needs to be rearranged. If you have not been contacted by the hospital you should first check their website for additional advice. If you are still unsure then contact the hospital direct.
Your GP practice will be open and working as normal on the days of the industrial action. Given that GPs may experience greater demand than normal over this period, we strongly recommend that you contact them early if you need advice or an appointment.
If you need emergency care, Accident and Emergency departments will be open for patients with serious and life threatening conditions. As is always the case to ensure that hospitals can treat those who most need it, only those patients with serious and life threatening conditions should visit their A&E.
Other medical needs
If you have regular medication please make sure you have collected your prescription from your GP and have been to the pharmacist to collect it, and have it to hand.
If you become ill over this period and need advice, please visit www.healthhelpnow-nhs.net.
Your local pharmacist can offer advice and treatment for a range of common minor illnesses and injuries. For more serious conditions you should continue to contact your GP as usual, or call 111.