Health officials in Lancashire and South Cumbria are preparing for the next round of industrial action as the public are urged to use services wisely during the school holidays.
Unions have announced 96 hours of continuous junior doctors’ strike action from 7am on Friday 11 August until 7am on Tuesday 15 August.
This is the ninth month of industrial action across the NHS and staff continue to work hard to provide patients with the best possible care under the circumstances. So far, industrial action has impacted approximately 778,000 hospital appointments across the NHS with over 458,000 staff shifts interrupted by strike action during this time.
Lindsey Dickinson, associate medical director for primary care at NHS Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care Board (ICB), which organises health services for the region, said: “The NHS has tried and tested plans in place to mitigate risks to patient safety and manage the disruption caused by industrial action, but these unprecedented strikes will lead to significant service disruption.
“We are asking people to use services wisely especially as this round of industrial action coincides with the summer school holidays, meaning services will be under even more pressure.
“Due to this, services may feel different for patients as they could face longer waits and deferred treatment. Please make sure you use NHS 111 online as the first port of call for health needs and only use 999 if it is a life-threatening emergency.”
The NHS will contact you if your appointment needs to be rescheduled due to strike action. If you have not been contacted, please attend your appointment as planned.
Junior doctors make up around half of all doctors in the NHS. Junior doctors are qualified doctors who have anywhere up to eight years’ experience working as a hospital doctor, depending on their specialty, or up to three years in general practice.
Local NHS services will be using their websites and social media channels to provide up-to-date information to the public about local service disruption – so please check before you travel.
NHS 111 Online can tell you:
• Where to get help for your symptoms.
• How to find general health information and advice.
• Where to get an emergency supply of your prescribed medicine.
• How to get a repeat prescription.
• How to get an emergency dental appointment.
More information about when to call 999 and when to go to A&E is available via the national NHS website.