NHS strike data released

The NHS has published data following the junior doctors and consultants strike last week.

According to NHS England: "Doctors began their strike action on Monday (2) at 7am and finished at 7am on Thursday (5). This week’s latest action saw 118,026 inpatient and outpatient appointments rescheduled. At the peak of the action, on Tuesday 3 October, there were 27,137 staff absent from work due to industrial action."

NHS national medical director Professor Sir Stephen Powis said: “Coping with three full days of joint industrial action has been extraordinarily challenging for the NHS this week with high demand for services, and yet again we have seen thousands more appointments postponed for patients in need of care.

“The impact goes beyond planned care too, as the focus on patient safety and emergency care means there’s not enough staff to cover other areas, which can slow down discharge and take clinicians away from their usual work.

“It has been particularly difficult this week as we had little time to recover from the last round of action and as we approach the winter period, when we are under significantly more pressure, strikes are increasingly challenging”.

BMA council chair Phil Banfield spoke at the Manchester rally during the strikes and said that the union is ready to continue striking.

He said: "But our patients need the prime minister to meet with us now; restore the value of pay, now; make a credible offer, now; end these disputes, now.

"For our future, for our patients, and the future and health of the people of this country."