NHS strikes: At least 137,000 hospital appointments cancelled

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 6TH: NHS workers and supporters go on strike outside University College Hospital during a day of national strikes on February 6th, 2023 in London, England. For the first time since the strikes began, nurses together are going beyond wages and working conditions. (Photo by Jon Williamson/Getty Images)

NHS workers and supporters picket outside University College Hospital (Image: Getty)

Hospitals in England have had to postpone at least 137,000 appointments due to industrial action by exhausted nurses, ambulance staff and physiotherapists.

Patients are being “hit hard” by the strikes after the government failed to negotiate wage demands.

Data released by the health service shows 137,081 appointments have been rescheduled in less than two months, with more than 49,000 being rescheduled on Monday and Tuesday.

Saffron Cordery, deputy chief executive of NHS Providers, said: “We cannot afford to see industrial action becoming the new normal”.

“There are no winners in this situation: patients are being hit hard, trusts are unable to provide the care they want, and staff feel they have no choice but to join the picket line,” he said.

“While shop stewards are incredibly adept at handling challenging situations, these ongoing strikes threaten to do major long-term damage to the NHS, including hampering efforts and hard-won progress in tackling supply backlogs.

“We are also concerned that fewer ambulance trips on strike days could mean fewer patients getting much-needed care when they need it.”

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Vuk Valcic/SOPA Images/Shutterstock (13742749f) A physiotherapist holds a placard reading'Claps don't pay bills' during a rally outside the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) picket line outside the St Thousands of NHS workers Physiotherapists go on strike for the first time. NHS Physiotherapists go on strike in London, UK - January 26, 2023

A physical therapist holds a placard reading ‘Claps don’t pay bills’ during a rally outside St Thomas’ Hospital

NHS nurses from the Royal College of Nursing form a picket line as they strike outside St Thomas Hospital for safe staffing, fair pay and working conditions on February 6, 2023 in London, Britain. Today, nurses and ambulances went on strike in the largest industrial action by health workers as a record number of them leave, putting even more pressure on the national health service at an already difficult time. (Photo by Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images)

Workers strike for safe staffing, fair pay and working conditions (Image: Getty)

Why are NHS nurses on strike?

The RCN has said NHS nurses have suffered a 20% pay cut in real terms since 2010.

The union is campaigning for a pay rise of 5% above inflation to help nurses overcome real pay cuts, support nurses through the cost of living crisis and recognize their critical skills.

There are also record job vacancies in nursing: 25,000 nursing staff resigned last year.

Data released by the NHS shows that in December more than 54,500 patients in England faced emergency department waits of more than 12 hours before being admitted – the highest since August 2010, when the data began.

Mr Cordery warned that the high number of postponed appointments will only increase if no solution is found.

He urged the government to “urgently talk to unions about pay for this fiscal year.”

The latest data from the NHS comes as government-approved waiting lists may not go down for at least two more years and may even double.

Around six million people are currently awaiting treatment, including hip and knee replacements, cataract surgery and tests.

The biggest strike in NHS history erupted on Monday as tens of thousands of staff from around 71 trusts across England went on walkouts.

These included members of the Royal College of Nursing, as well as paramedics from GMB and Unite, call attendants and other staff from Ambulance Trusts.

Union leaders have also urged ministers to act to prevent more strikes, but have indicated they will not budge on one of the main issues – pay for 2022/23.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

For more stories like this, Visit our news page.

https://metro.co.uk/2023/02/09/nhs-strikes-at-least-137000-hospital-appointments-cancelled-18251384/ NHS strikes: At least 137,000 hospital appointments cancelled

Justin Scaccy

InternetCloning is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – admin@internetcloning.com. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Related Articles

Back to top button