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Junior doctor contract rejection 'very bad news' for NHS

The rejection by junior doctors of the Government's new contract offer is "very bad news" for the NHS with the prospect of more industrial action, ITV News Health Editor Rachel Younger has said.

Younger noted both the turnout and level of support to reject the negotiated contract terms were significantly lower than the numbers that originally voted for strike action, suggesting "fatigue" within the profession.

Hunt: Junior doctors' rejection 'extremely disappointing'

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has said the majority vote by junior doctors against the Government's new contract was "extremely disappointing".

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt had agreed terms on a proposed contract with the British Medical Association in May. Credit: PA

Hunt said he had hoped the proposed contract would have gained approval after it "was agreed with and endorsed by the leader of the BMA junior doctors' committee".

It is extremely disappointing that junior doctors have voted against this contract, which was agreed with and endorsed by the leader of the BMA Junior Doctors’ Committee and supported by senior NHS leaders.

The BMA’s figures show that only forty per cent of those eligible actually voted against this contract, and a third of BMA members didn’t vote at all. We will now consider the outcome.

– Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt

A spokesperson for the Department of Health said it was "sorry to see (chair of the BMA junior doctor committee) Dr Johann Malawana resign, given his desire to reach a contract agreement".

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