Shropshire Star

Extent of strike impact on Shropshire hospitals revealed by NHS

Nearly 350 health workers walked out over four days of the most recent junior doctors strikes in Shropshire – with around 200 appointments cancelled as a result.

The latest figures show how many procedures were cancelled as a result of the latest junior doctors strike.

The ongoing dispute between junior doctors and the \Government over pay saw staff walk out for four days from August 11 to 15.

It was the latest action in a series of strikes this year, and will be followed by another strike from consultants, for 48 hours from 7am on August 24.

Figures from NHS England show the impact of the most recent junior doctors' action was felt most keenly in Shropshire at Shrewsbury & Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH), which runs both Princess Royal Hospital in Telford, and Royal Shrewsbury Hospital.

Across the four days of the strike, a total of 341 members of staff were off.

The biggest impact came on the Friday and the Monday of the strike, with 143 taking action on the Friday, and 127 on the Monday. For the Saturday and Sunday there were 36, and 35 staff off respectively.

The figures reported by the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital (RJAH) show there were three members of staff on strike on both Friday and Monday.

Across the hospitals, SaTH saw 196 inpatient and outpatients postponed over the four days, with 18 cancelled at RJAH.

Across England there were a total of 61,200 rescheduled appointments.

NHS England said the number of staff absent from work due to strikes peaked on August 11 at 23,682.

It added that the total of acute rescheduled inpatient and outpatient appointments and procedures over eight months of industrial action across the NHS now stands at 839,327.

NHS national medical director Professor Sir Stephen Powis said: “We will soon hit one million appointments rescheduled if strikes continue, which shows the enormous impact industrial action is having on patients, their families and the NHS.

“It’s difficult to overstate the scale of the disruption, as many services also avoid scheduling appointments for strike days meaning the true figure will be even higher.

“During almost nine months of action, our hard-working staff have done all they can to keep patients safe while tackling a record backlog, but there is no doubt this cumulative impact is posing a huge challenge for the health service.”