Doctors in Britain plan to strike on June 21, The Telegraph reports.
The British Medical Association, the union for doctors in Britain’s socialized medical system, says that doctors will postpone non-urgent operations and other nonessential appointments that day, resulting in a “very serious impact on waiting times, not only for the patients on that day but all subsequent patients in the following weeks and months,” according to the Department of Health.
The strike would be the first by doctors in Britain in almost 40 years.
The strike comes in response to the government’s pension proposals for doctors. The Royal College of Nursing also opposes the government’s proposals, but the nurse’s union prohibits strikes that will affect patients, unlike the BMA.
Doctors will still perform urgent procedures and treat emergency cases, but the postponement of other appointments will lead to a backlog that could last up to three months and affect over one million patients.
The Daily Mail reports that thousands of doctors will ignore the strike order from the BMA. Dr. James Kingsland, a general practitioner, is one of those doctors.
“I’ve got no strong feelings on this issue other than I’ve got patients to see,” said Kingsland. “I don’t think it’s the right way of tackling the issue.”