Junior Doctors: Industrial Action

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 6:36 pm on 5th September 2016.

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Photo of Jeremy Hunt Jeremy Hunt The Secretary of State for Health 6:36 pm, 5th September 2016

I thank the hon. Lady for what she did alongside many colleagues working in A&E departments over many years, but to call this an imposition is a mischaracterisation given what actually happened. The contract was not only agreed, but recommended and supported by the leaders of the BMA. Before she was elected, we had many discussions in the House about whether negotiations were possible and what I should do, and there were a range of different views. In the end, I listened—just as she has asked me to today—and sat down and negotiated a deal that was supported by the BMA’s leaders. That is why it is so incomprehensible that those same leaders—the people who represent her and her profession—have now called the most extreme strike in NHS history.