Statement ahead of BMA junior doctor strike action in Wales

Director of the Welsh NHS Confederation Darren Hughes responds to the Welsh Government's statement on next week's junior doctor strike action.

12 January 2024

Responding to the Health Minister’s statement on next week’s junior doctor strike action in Wales, director of the Welsh NHS Confederation Darren Hughes said: 

“It’s a concern for NHS leaders that this industrial action will be taking place on one of the most pressurised weeks of the year, following recent weeks of significant winter pressures. 

“Inevitably there will be a knock-on effect on the NHS’s capacity to perform the balancing act of winter pressures versus making inroads into the elective backlog. 

“Staff and managers have therefore been undertaking significant contingency planning to prepare for the industrial action, including working hard to fill rota gaps and rearrange existing non-urgent appointments and operations. 

“NHS leaders know staff do not take the decision to strike lightly, as we all know the impact it has on patients and colleagues. The focus is now on mitigating risks as far as possible. 

“We ask the public to please continue to attend your planned care appointments unless you are contacted to say otherwise and to continue to call 999 in serious, life-threatening cases. As a first port of call, NHS 111 online can offer urgent care advice and health board websites have useful advice to help you access the right care in the right place at the right time.”