Doctors on strike tomorrow

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PATIENTS are being asked to attend their appointments as usual despite strike action taking place tomorrow (Thursday).

Members of the British Medical Association (BMA), the doctors union, voted for the 24-hour strike over Government plans to change the terms of their pensions.

The national medical strike has affected some appointments with doctors and nurses across the district.

At the Stockingate practice in South Kirkby some appointments may be cancelled due to the action - but the local primary care trust, NHS Wakefield District, said that patients would have been contacted if this was the case.

The Grange surgery in Hemsworth, Little Lane surgery and the White Rose surgery which are both based in South Elmsall, are not affected.

The advice to patients from the trust is to attend any appointments booked for today should attend it as normal, unless the practice contacts the patient to cancel.

A spokesperson for NHS Wakefield District said even if a patient’s practice cancels an appointment, people will still be able to get urgent or emergency care from your doctor.

They said there is no need to attend hospital A&E units unless the condition is life-threatening.

Appointments with health visitors, district nurses or midwife appointments at a GP practice should be running as normal.

Some NHS hospital care will also be affected and any patients with pre-booked appointments on the day will be notified in advance of any change by the relevant hospital.

If patients have not been contacted and have a hospital appointment today, they should attend as normal.

Carole Langrick, chief operating officer at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “We respect the rights of medical staff to take industrial action in response to the proposed national changes to the pension scheme.

“We have asked all our doctors if they intend to take part in the industrial action and so far, a small number have said that they are taking part.

“This is affecting a small number of non-urgent appointments and procedures.

“Patients that need emergency or urgent care are not affected.

“In affected areas, we are contacting patients to let them know that their appointment is affected and to rearrange this with them as soon as possible.”