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Further disruption lies ahead as junior doctor and consultant strike action looms throughout August

4 August 2023

Unions have announced a four-day walkout of junior doctors from 7am on Friday 11th August until 7am on Tuesday, 15th August.

This action will be quickly followed by a 48-hour strike by hospital consultants from 7am on Thursday, 24th August to 7am on Saturday, 26th August.

As a result, significant service disruption is highly likely across all East Cheshire NHS Trust sites including Macclesfield, Knutsford and Congleton hospitals.

As with previous strikes we urge our public to be mindful about visiting the Emergency Department and only attend in the event of an emergency.

Dr John Hunter, Medical Director for East Cheshire NHS Trust said: “Our teams are working closely with partners to deal with this severe disruption and ensure appropriate plans are enacted prior to the August strikes.

“We would like to make the public aware that hospital consultants are the NHS’s most senior clinicians, whose roles cannot be covered by other Trust staff. Therefore, during the consultant strikes, we will be running an emergency only service and it is likely that we will need to reschedule planned and elective care during this time.”

The NHS is working hard to prioritise resources to protect emergency treatment, critical care, neonatal care, maternity, and trauma, and ensure we prioritise patients who have waited the longest for elective care and cancer surgery.

We will only reschedule appointments and procedures where necessary and will rebook as soon as possible. Unfortunately, these strikes will have a significant impact upon planned and routine care.

If we have not contacted you, please attend your appointment as planned. The Trust will contact you if your appointment needs to be rescheduled due to strike action.

The NHS is asking patients to choose services appropriately during industrial action and take simple steps to help ensure care is available to patients who need it most. This includes using 111 online as the first port of call for health needs, and only using 999 if it is a life-threatening emergency.

GP practices will continue to be open during the junior doctors and consultants strikes. Please continue to attend your GP and dental appointments, unless you are contacted and told otherwise.


Notes for editors

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  • East Cheshire NHS Trust is the main provider of acute and community health services for the people of East Cheshire. The trust is based at Macclesfield District General Hospital.
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