Newham’s junior doctors hand 1,000-signature letter to Stephen Timms

Stephen Timms MP with doctors at Newham University Hospital

Stephen Timms MP with doctors at Newham University Hospital - Credit: Archant

The dispute over junior doctors’ contracts is leading to some Newham University Hospital staff moving halfway around the world to find alternative employment.

The revelation came as junior doctors have handed an open letter to East Ham MP Stephen Timms as the dispute between the British Medical Association and the government escalates.

The letter, handed over outside Newham University Hospital, was signed by more than 1,000 people during the first two rounds of industrial action.

Mr Timms met junior doctors outside the Glen Road, Plaistow, hospital this afternoon as they took part in the fourth round of industrial action.

Accident and emergency registrar Jitendra Siyani said he is set to move to Australia later this year as a result of the new contract, which is set to be imposed on junior doctors in August.

The 32-year-old said: “I’m moving out of the NHS and going to Australia in October.

“I’m not the only one, other junior doctors are going to Australia and the Middle East as well, where we’ll be paid more money.”

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Mr Timms pledged his support to the junior doctors, saying that the future of the NHS depended on them.

“This is a very intelligent group of young junior doctors who we need to depend on to get our health services in the future,” he said.

“I will be giving this letter to Jeremy Hunt and I will tell him the response that the people of Newham do not want this [the contract].”

Amy Agahi, a clinical teaching fellow and BMA representative, said she was pleased with the response hospital users had shown during the strikes.

“I think we have had an impressive amount of public support,” said the 30-year-old.

“It’s not only the public, other members of the health service as well.

“Jeremy Hunt has said he’ll impose these contracts, but we want to talk and come to terms that we both agree with.”

The next strike, which will include a full withdrawal of labour between 8am and 5pm, will run for 48 hours from Tuesday, April 26.