UK: 40% of Junior Doctors Plan to Quit NHS

According to a new survey, 40% of junior doctors plan to leave the NHS as soon as they can find another role. Pay and poor working conditions were the main reasons cited for wanting to quit, said the British Medical Association (BMA), who commissioned the research.

UK: 40% of Junior Doctors Plan to Quit NHS
Image credit: Ella Pickover/The Independent

Facts

  • According to a new survey, 40% of junior doctors plan to leave the NHS as soon as they can find another role. Pay and poor working conditions were the main reasons cited for wanting to quit, said the British Medical Association (BMA), who commissioned the research.
  • The BMA said the NHS would not be able to cope if two-fifths of its junior doctor workforce resigned. It urged the government to “get back around the table” and avoid a strike set to be held by doctors next week. One third of the 4.5K junior doctors surveyed in England also said they plan to work in another country in the next 12 months.
  • Australia and New Zealand are considered top destinations among those looking to emigrate. The survey comes ahead of an industrial action ballot affecting junior doctors in England, which opens on Jan. 9.
  • Junior doctors in England have faced some of the steepest cuts to their pay of any public sector worker over the past 15 years, with wages falling by more than a quarter in real terms since 2008-09, according to new analysis.
  • The Health Secretary has made it clear that supporting and retaining the NHS workforce is one of his key priorities, a spokesman said. He continued, saying the resident salary will be increased by up to 8.2% by 2023, and an additional £90M will be invested to offer the most experienced junior doctors higher pay, higher bonuses for those who work most weekends, and higher pay for night shifts.
  • "If the government wants ‘move to Australia’ to stay off the new year resolution lists of junior doctors this year, it is going to have to start by reversing the 26% real-terms pay cut they have endured since 2008,” said Dr Vivek Trivedi, the co-chair of the BMA junior doctors committee. Trivedi continued, calling on the government to "stop ignoring our repeated calls to address our pay."

Sources: Independent, Sports Yahoo, Standard, Guardian, and US Today.

Narratives

  • Left narrative, as provided by Social Review. Not only have nurses and frontline workers borne the brunt of the pandemic, they now face a government trying to nickel-and-dime them out of a necessary and well-deserved pay increase, all while dealing with record-high inflation and a buckling healthcare system. Public sector wages have stagnated profoundly under conservative governance. The unacceptable exploitation of essential workers needs to stop.
  • Right narrative, as provided by Telegraph. Unions must face the fact that every day they stay on the picket line puts the lives of countless Britons at risk. The government is scrambling to find solutions to the economic crisis sparked by COVID and inflation, as well as the market destabilization induced by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The unions are simply not playing fair by ignoring the reality of current economic circumstances — this is a safety issue.