Fringe Box



Tomorrow Sees the First NHS Strike Taken by Three Groups of Clinicians Simultaneously

Published on: 2 Oct, 2023
Updated on: 3 Oct, 2023

The Royal Surrey County Hospital

Tomorrow, Tuesday, October 3, three groups of NHS staff – consultants, junior doctors and radiographers – will be striking together for the first time in NHS history. 

The consultants and junior doctors are on strike from today.

In a statement, the Royal Surrey County Hospital said: “Unfortunately, [the industrial action] means we will be rescheduling several routine and less urgent appointments for scans and imaging such as X-ray, ultrasound, CT and MRI. We will not be offering a walk-in GP X-ray service at any of our sites, including:

  • Royal Surrey County Hospital
  • Haslemere Community Hospital (and the Minor Injuries Unit)
  • Milford Community Hospital
  • Cranleigh Village Hospital”

The details of the industrial action are as follows:

Junior doctors’ strike: 7am Monday, 2 October – 7am Thursday, 5 October.
Consultants’ strike: 7am Monday, 2 October – 7am Thursday, 5 October.
Radiographers’ strike: 8am Tuesday, 3 October – 8am Wednesday, 4 October.

The statement continued: “The safety of our patients and staff remains our top priority during industrial action. We are working together across our Trust to make sure we have robust plans in place to assure the safety and welfare of our patients and our colleagues during strike action.”

Those with appointments are asked not call to check if their appointment is going ahead but to attend unless they are told otherwise.

Some radiotherapy appointments have been cancelled during the radiographers’ strike, and the statement said patients should speak to a member of the radiotherapy team on 01483 406600 if they are unsure whether they should still attend.

The now familiar warning about attending only if really necessary is once again given: “Please be aware that our hospitals are likely to be busier than usual. You can help us manage this challenging period by seeking help from the most appropriate health services, and only attending A&E for serious accidents and emergencies.

“If you are unwell, use NHS 111 online for 24/7 advice about the most appropriate care for your needs, or call 111 – they will provide medical advice and direct you to the best care for your needs.

“Regardless of any strike action, it is important that patients who need urgent medical care continue to come forward as normal, especially in emergencies and life-threatening cases – when someone is seriously ill or injured, or their life is at risk.

“We are always here for those who need care. ”

Professor Andy Rhodes, Joint Chief Medical Officer for Surrey Heartlands Health and
Care Partnership, which covers most of Guildford borough, said: “We have well-rehearsed plans in place to manage periods of planned industrial action and, working together across health and care organisations, we will continue to prioritise critical services – but due to the scale of the impact, and multiple strikes happening at the same time, unfortunately, many appointments and planned operations will have to be rescheduled.

“During the last period of strike action in September, over the four-day period, we rescheduled over 230 planned inpatient appointments and procedures and over 1,700 outpatients appointments – so we are seeing a significant impact each time.”


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