It has been another challenging week due to ongoing industrial action. Our junior doctors went on strike for the longest period to date followed by our consultants who are in the middle of their first strike.
We’ve worked hard to ensure we can cover emergency care throughout the industrial action; however, we have had to rearrange 872 outpatient appointments, and 61 non-urgent surgeries. This is in addition to having to arrange 8,358 outpatient appointments and 605 non-urgent surgeries across four previous strikes by junior doctors, which have been held each month since March. When we state numbers, it’s important to remember that each one reflects a patient in our community that needs our care. I apologise to everyone who has been affected; I appreciate how difficult and frustrating it must be.
Industrial action also impacts our financial position. So far, it has cost our Trust £1.3m, while cancelled surgeries has meant we have lost out on £1.2m income. As I have said before, I have sympathy for the concerns doctors at all stages of their career have. They are a hugely valuable part of our workforce. I hope we see a resolution urgently.
Throughout the strike, our staff have once again been working incredibly hard in minimising the impact on our services. My thanks as always for their efforts.
I’m proud that we continue to do everything we can to support our doctors. Recently we launched a Women’s Health Academy and Training Centre which will enhance the training on offer for our female doctors, helping them on their way to becoming a consultant. And in providing higher quality guidance and mentoring, we’re also improving the care we give to our patients.
And I am really pleased that the hard work of our staff was recognised in an article in the New York Times. Earlier this year, we welcomed Mark Landler, who was writing a feature on how the NHS was coping during winter. I hope you enjoy reading it.
Celebrating South Asian Heritage Month
It was a pleasure celebrating South Asian Heritage Month this week with colleagues. We have nearly 1,500 members of staff who come from countries from that part of the world and it was amazing to hear and learn more about their culture through conversations, food and entertainment.
I’m grateful that they have chosen to work at BHRUT. Our diverse international workforce is one of our biggest strengths and should be celebrated; we are a much better organisation for it.
NHS 75 – a birthday still to remember
There is still a great buzz about our NHS 75 events.
Our week-long celebrations including our debate on the future of the NHS have been captured in our on our website. If you’re short on time, I’d encourage you to watch our compilation video. It really highlights how much we value our staff and I hope it inspires people in our community to want to come and work for us.
Have a lovely weekend.