Trade unions representing NHS staff are in dispute with the Government over the 2022/23 pay award. A number of the unions have balloted their NHS members to take part in industrial action. As a result members of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) are striking on the 15 and 20 December 2022, and members of the GMB, Unite and Unison (ambulance staff) are striking on 21 December 2022 and members of GMB (ambulance staff) are striking on the 28 December 2022.
- If you are concerned how this may impact your care, please note the following:
- Regardless of any strike action taking place, it is really important that patients who need urgent medical care continue to come forward as normal, especially in emergency and life-threatening cases – when someone is seriously ill or injured, or their life is at risk.
- If the NHS has not contacted you, please attend your appointment as planned. The NHS will contact you if your appointment needs to be rescheduled due to strike action.
- GP services are not impacted by this strike action. Please continue to attend your GP appointments, unless you are contacted and told otherwise.
- On days where there is strike action, patients should only call 999 if it is a medical or mental health emergency (when someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk). Ambulances will still be able to respond in these situations, but this may only be where there is an immediate risk to life.
- Where the situation is not life-threatening, alternative support will be available through NHS 111 online or through the NHS 111 helpline, and where possible, it is advised that you arrange alternative transport.
- NHS.UK website has more information on when to call 999 and when to go to A&E.
- Get help for your symptoms - NHS 111