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Its no suprise that the media's opinion is that of doctors who "dont care" endangering patient lives with their greed. After all, we're all paid far too much dont you know! With the media only selling one side of the story it may take some considerable time to regain the public image. Even my non-medical relatives feel that our actions are unjustifed after reading the BMA side of the story. You can guarentee that the media will be hunting for any medical errors or incidents which may occur to demonstrate how we didn't even maintain safe service.
According to the government and media we are "endangering lives" and making hospitals "unsafe". What most members of public are not realising is that there will be more doctors in the building than any weekend / bank holiday day, and only those who are BMA members will be striking, everyone else will be working as normal. Therefore the industrial action will cause far less disruption to services than the jubilee bank holiday weekend .
Dividing the profession
There are a number of doctors in high profile jobs who despite being BMA members have said they will work as usual. Those who chose / are not entitled to strike may feel resentment that they are being left to do the work while those on strike stand at the picket lines.
Effect on emergency care services
With GP surgeries being shut we can probably anticipate an increase in members of the public seeking A&E / walk-in-centre care and potentially action from daytime inpatient jobs not being done will increase workload on the night teams.
But will our industrial action lead to negociation from the government and for a better deal for our pensions? Only time will tell - but from the lack of information in the national media we certainly dont seem to be making moves towards calling off the strike.
What difference will Thursday's actions make to me? I'm on the night shift, so I'll be working as usual providing the emergency care which of course is the only work that happens at night (if only) and will review the news on the way home to see if my pension has been saved.