Hospital patients are being urged not to go to the Horton General Hospital’s A&E unit tomorrow (Tuesday) or on Wednesday to minimise work for consultants who will be taking over during the junior doctors’ strike.
The Oxford University Hospitals’ NHS Foundation Trust said services will continue to be safe but it would help if people use alternative services.
The junior doctors are taking industrial action in a bid to get the government to reverse their decision to impose a contract on them forcing them to work longer hours which they say is unsafe for patients.
Paul Brennan, Director of Clinical Services at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “We are working closely with all of our staff to ensure that services continue to be safe during the planned industrial action on Tuesday and Wednesday.
“We regret that the two sides have yet to reach an agreement at a national level and we are very sorry for the inconvenience this is causing to our patients.
“We would request patients NOT to come to our Emergency Departments unless you have a real emergency. Please look at the alternatives available. You can find advice on additional health services in our area at www.nhs.uk/strike.
Cancer consultant Dr Clive Peedell, who stood for the National Health Action Party for Chipping Norton at the general election, said: “Urgent and emergency provision (including maternity, oncology, renal dialysis, trauma and other urgent services) will continue. Non-urgent elective operations and outpatient appointments are being rescheduled and all patients affected will have been contacted and offered an alternative appointment.
“We want patients to know that junior doctors have GPs’ and senior doctors’ support and that we will care for them whilst they act in the best interests of the NHS as a whole by standing up to the government.
“We must keep our focus on the fact that the imposition of an unsafe contract will mean worse care in the future for all.”