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Thousands of junior doctors walk out for second day over contract row

Thousands of junior doctors across England are preparing for a second day of strike action over a row with the Government about a new contract.

Junior doctors will provide emergency care only from 8am today as part of a 48-hour strike which began on Wednesday. Two further 48-hour strikes are planned for April 8 and April 26.

The strikes have led to the cancellation of thousands of operations and procedures.

NHS England said urgent and emergency care services will be available as normal but hospitals are expected to be under extra pressure.

It comes after Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said he will impose the contract on junior doctors - everyone up to consultant level - after talks with the British Medical Association failed to reach a resolution.

The new contracts are due to be imposed in August.

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Poll suggests majority of public support junior doctors

A picket line outside Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton. Credit: Tom Pugh / PA Wire/PA Images

The majority of the public support junior doctors in their dispute with the government over contracts according to an Ipsos MORI poll for BBC News.

Public support for the latest strike is as high as it was for the first two stoppages earlier this year, with 65% of 860 adults in England supporting the action.

The survey found most people still think the Government is most at fault for the dispute, but a rising number believe equal blame should be shared by the Government and doctors' leaders.

Some 57% said the Government was most at fault for the dispute continuing this long, down from 64% in February, while the number saying junior doctors were most at fault remained around 11%.

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