Responding to the confirmation of new strike dates that have been announced for January, Matthew Taylor chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said:
“Health leaders will breathe a sigh of relief on behalf of their staff and patients that next week’s ambulance strikes have been called off but with four days to prepare for in January, they know that trouble awaits.
“No health leader wants to be in this situation and the new strikes announced for January could have been avoided had the government attempted to find more common ground with the unions over pay. The government cannot just sit back and let these strikes happen when patient care is on the line and the unions must honour their commitment to protect “life and limb”.
“It’s clear this is becoming critical and the worry is that NHS will be held hostage to this position of stalemate between both sides. This benefits no one and the government must act and reach a compromise with trade unions now.”