Government pay negotiations are deemed reckless by the British Medical Association

Inpatient unit

Before the results of a vote by junior doctors to strike, the British Medical Association accused the government of acting in a "reckless" manner.

Professor Philip Banfield of the BMA claimed that the health secretary and prime minister were refusing to engage in substantive talks with unions.

The BMA and other unions were invited to a pay-related meeting, according to the Department of Health and Social Care.

The BMA membership is anticipated to vote in favor of a strike.

Rishi Sunak and Health Secretary Steve Barclay were "standing on the precipice of an historic mistake," according to Professor Banfield, the BMA's chair of council.

Adding that officials were "reckless" for believing they could remain silent and wait it out, he charged that the government was "guaranteeing escalation.".

He said they deserved better and weren't expensive for the knowledge and abilities they offered in his remarks, which he made on Sunday at a conference for young doctors.

A vote on strike action has been conducted among 45,000 BMA members, and the results are anticipated on Monday.

If a vote in favor of strike action is successful, the BMA has already given notice that it will go on three days of strike action.

The pay dispute is similar to recent strikes by ambulance and nursing staff.

The current pay agreement for junior doctors expires in March 2023, and the government claims it would be unaffordable to raise salaries in line with inflation.

In addition, Professor Banfield charged that the government had "let patients down," saying that "all NHS staff are standing up for our patients in a system that seems to have forgotten that staff appreciation and well-being are directly related to patient safety and improved care outcomes. ".

A spokesperson for the Department of Health and Social Care stated: "We have been clear that supporting and retaining the NHS workforce is one of our main priorities. We greatly value the work of junior doctors.

"Junior doctors' pay has increased by a total of 8 point 2 percent since 2019/20 as part of a multi-year agreement we reached with the BMA. A higher pay band for the most experienced employees as well as higher rates for night shifts were also implemented.

The BMA and other medical unions were invited to a meeting with the Health and Social Care Secretary to discuss pay, working conditions, and workload. He has made it clear that he wants to keep talking about how to make the NHS a better place for everyone to work.

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