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Plan for monthly junior doctors' strikes draws criticism

Junior doctors in England are to hold monthly strike action for the remainder of 2016, the British Medical Association has announced.

Here are the key developments:

  • The action will take place from 8am to 5pm between September 12 and 16, October 5 and 11, November 14 and 18, and December 5 and 9
  • The strikes are an 'unforgivable' betrayal of those needing care, the head of the Patients Association has said
  • Senior doctors have urged their junior colleagues to call off the strikes
  • Prime Minister Theresa May accused the BMA of 'playing politics', while Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said doctors were being 'very confrontational'
  • The BMA said it will call off industrial action if the Government agrees not to impose the new contracts
  • Six strikes have already taken place across England during the dispute
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Theresa May urged to 'pause' new junior doctor contracts

Theresa May has been urged to "pause" plans to bring in a new junior doctors' contract after the issue led to an extended stand-off and planned strikes.

Elizabeth McAnulty of the Patients Association told ITV News that the prime minister should suspend work on the controversial new deal - as she previously did with the Hinkley point power plant.

She called on Ms May to "step in and stop this - pause it - until she's had an opportunity to really look at the facts" as patients face repeated strikes by junior doctors over the rest of the year.

Ms McAnulty said the impact of the strikes on patients would be "devastating" and they would lead to some 30,000 operations being cancelled.

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