NHS patients warned to ‘expect extreme disruption’ as consultants and junior doctors begin 72-hour walkout over pay

2 October 2023, 06:48 | Updated: 2 October 2023, 06:52

The walkout is set to be the longest period of combined strike action in England.
The walkout is set to be the longest period of combined strike action in England. Picture: Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

Patients have been told non-emergency care will be brought to a “near standstill” starting today as NHS consultants and junior doctors stage a three-day joint strike in England.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Consultants and junior doctors who are members of the British Medical Association (BMA) are set to begin the walkout at 7 am on Monday.

It is thought to be the longest joint strike in the history of NHS England amid ongoing disputes over pay.

The strikes are set to coincide with Rishi Sunak’s first Conservative Party conference as prime minister.

Striking consultants and junior doctors represent about four-fifths of doctors working in hospitals.

"NHS services have had very little time to recover from the previous action and now face three consecutive days which will prove extremely challenging, with almost all routine care brought to a standstill,” NHS England medical director Prof Sir Stephen Powis said.

The BMA has promised “Christmas Day” cover will be provided throughout the 72-hour strike, meaning there will be emergency care staff but other services will be brought to a “near standstill”.

Junior doctors and consultants are set to walk out for 72 hours.
Junior doctors and consultants are set to walk out for 72 hours. Picture: Getty

Read more: Hunt vows to 'make work pay' announcing benefits reforms and boost to National Living Wage

Read more: Boris Johnson 'won't be attending' Conservative party conference Rachel Johnson reveals

Both groups staged a joint walkout for the first in NHS history last month - but the overlap between their two walkouts only lasted 24 hours.

The strikes come after the government implemented a 6% pay rise for consultants and 6% plus a £1,250 lump sum for junior doctors earlier this year. It said its offer was “final and fair” and there would be no further offers.

Thousands of operations and appointments have been cancelled as a result of the strikes, with NHS leaders warning that some patients are seeing their appointments rescheduled three times.

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Susan Hall criticised Sadiq Khan after she was pickpocketed

Tory London mayoral candidate Susan Hall rages against Sadiq Khan after 'pickpocketing ordeal on Tube'

Sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) can be made from a variety of sources, including crops, household waste and cooking oils

Virgin Atlantic flight powered by cooking oil to make maiden journey from London to New York

Israel Palestinians Hostages

Hamas set to release more hostages as Gaza truce enters fifth day

National Highways has been contacted by coroners over smart motorways

Coroners write to National Highways over smart motorway fears as agency spends £500k on legal fees

Met chief Sir Mark Rowley

'Armed cops would rather face terrorists than gangsters', Met Police chief says

Russia US Journalist

Russian court extends detention of Wall Street Journal reporter

APTOPIX Indonesia Rhino

Critically endangered Sumatran rhino born on Indonesian island

Kfir Bibas has been handed to a separate terror group, the IDF has claimed.

Hamas 'refuses to give youngest hostage back to Israel' and hands 10-month-old baby to separate terror group

Grace Dent revealed her 'heartbreak' to campmates after quitting the show.

‘My heart is broken’: Grace Dent feels she has ‘let campmates down’ as stars left teary over her I’m A Celeb exit

Meghan Markle faces a court battle against her half-sister Samantha.

Markle v Markle: Meghan faces defamation trial against half-sister Samantha as judge tables court date

Nurses are angry at doctors being awarded a bumper pay deal

Nurses 'disgusted' as doctors reach bumper pay deal with government as they warn of more strikes

Omid Scobie's new book contains a raft of claims about the royals

Archie's skin colour questions and King blasts Harry as a fool: The eight most explosive claims from new book Endgame

Palestinians drive through Gaza City

More hostages released as Israel-Hamas truce extended

Amazon company logo

EU regulators say Amazon acquisition of vacuum maker iRobot may harm competition

Sunak snubbed Greece's PM over the Elgin Marbles

Sunak snubs Greek prime minister after he calls for Elgin Marbles to be returned and compares it to splitting Mona Lisa

Republican presidential candidate and former US president Donald Trump

Donald Trump set to give evidence again next month in civil fraud trial