Nurses in England have returned to the picket line as part of an unprecedented push for better pay amid rising inflation.
With negotiations between health unions and the government at a standstill, thousands of people fled hospitals across the country in a series of disruptions scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday.
This latest wave of strikes will likely increase the pressure on the UK’s health service which the British Medical Association he says it is already struggling to cope with staff shortages, declining bed counts and underfunding.
Emergency care and cancer treatment will continue, but thousands of appointments and procedures are likely to be postponed, according to the SSN Confederationan organization representing NHS trusts in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
On Tuesday, UK Health Minister Steve Barclay admitted the industrial action “will impact patients”.
Health workers are demanding a 5% wage increase over inflation, but their representatives said they could compromise if the government were directly involved in negotiations with employers.
nurses, ambulance crewsTrain drivers, airport baggage handlers, border staff, driving instructors, bus drivers and postal workers have gone on strike in recent months to demand higher pay amid a cost-of-living crisis.
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The government has also angered unions by introducing a bill that will make it more difficult for key workers to strike “minimum levels of security” for firefighters, ambulance services and railways that need to be maintained during a strike.