“Junior Doctors in Wales Commence Three-Day Strike Amid Pay Dispute”

Thousands of junior doctors across Wales have initiated a three-day strike as part of their ongoing efforts to address a pay dispute. With more than 3,000 members of the British Medical Association (BMA) expected to withhold their services, the majority of planned operations have been postponed.

This strike marks the second instance of doctors walking out since January, citing a significant erosion of their pay over the last 15 years. Dr. Oba Babs-Osibodu, co-chairman of BMA Cymru’s junior doctors committee, criticized the Welsh government for its stance, stating that their 5% offer is insufficient and accused them of being “in denial.”

According to Dr. Babs-Osibodu, doctors’ pay has steadily declined in real terms for the past decade and a half, resulting in hourly earnings as low as ¬£13.65 despite their responsibilities for the care of numerous patients. He emphasized the urgent need for the government to address this issue.

The strike commenced at 07:00 GMT on Wednesday and is scheduled to continue until 07:00 on Saturday. With approximately 4,000 junior doctors comprising 40% of Wales’ medical workforce, predominantly in hospital settings, the impact on planned medical services is expected to be significant.

Health Minister Eluned Morgan of the Welsh government expressed disappointment over the decision to strike but acknowledged the strength of feeling among BMA members regarding the 5% pay offer. Minister Morgan reiterated that the government’s offer represents the financial constraints they face and affirmed their commitment to advocate for additional funding from the UK government to support fair pay rises for public sector workers.

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