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Jeremy Hunt to address MPs on junior doctors row

Jeremy Hunt is to make a statement to the House of Commons this morning on junior doctors' contracts, hours after a second 24-hour strike finished.

It comes after ITV News Political Editor Robert Peston learned that the new contracts could be imposed on doctors by Monday, before remaining differences are resolved.

Junior doctors return to work after 24-hour walkout

Demonstrators protest in Westminster during the latest 24-hour doctors' strike. Credit: Xinhua/SIPA USA/PA Images

Junior doctors have returned to work after a 24-hour walkout over proposed new contracts.

The deadlock has shown little sign of breaking - with the major sticking pointing remaining over weekend pay and whether Saturday should be classed as a normal working day.

Around 1,140 planned inpatient procedures were cancelled as a result of the latest walkout, alongside 1,734 day procedures, according to analysis by NHS England.

NHS England confirmed that 43% of junior doctors reported for duty on the day shift - a figure including doctors who had never intended to strike, such as those working in emergency care.

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Junior doctor contract talks reach 'end of the road'

A picket line outside Bristol Royal Infirmary, Bristol. Credit: PA

New contracts could be imposed on junior doctors by the Health Secretary after union leaders rejected his "best and final offer".

The Government's chief negotiator, Sir David Dalton, had warned talks were at "the end of the road" should the British Medical Association not endorse his latest offer by Wednesday afternoon.

Instead the BMA again called on the Health Secretary to accept its own proposed pay model and withdraw his threat to force through changes, even though the Government has refused to "remove that from the table".

A 24-hour strike by medics will end at 8am today.

Thousands of junior doctors walk out over contract dispute

Thousands of junior doctors walked out this morning in a second 24-hour strike over planned government changes to contracts which could see Saturdays reclassified as 'normal working hours'.

Negotiations have rumbled on - and tonight, ITV News learned Jeremy Hunt could impose the controversial new contracts within a matter of days.

Political correspondent Libby Wiener reports on the day's events:

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Striking doctors may withhold emergency care

ITV News' Mark Austin joined striking doctors as they made their way to parliament today, and found some doctors are "thinking the unthinkable" if Jeremy Hunt does not budge on the contract dispute.

A trainee anaesthetist said he, and his colleagues, would consider withholding emergency care in a future strike.

Video report by ITV News presenter Mark Austin

I would and I think the rest of my colleagues would. It would be something we would undertake with a seriously heavy heart but actually for the long term stability and safety of the NHS it's something we would all have to consider.

– Dr William Turner, trainee anaesthetist.

That move could split doctors and affect public support.

Two others told him they had already decided to move to Australia.

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