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AUDIO: Doctors go on strike

AUDIO: Doctors go on strike

Published at 11:36am 12th January 2016. (Updated at 8:47am 13th January 2016)

Junior doctors across Harrogate, Craven and Wharfedale have started a 24-hour strike.

It's part of a bitter row with the Government over pay and working conditions.

Members of the British Medical Association are opposing plans to introduce a new contract.

David Cameron has warned that the strike will be "damaging" to patients.

Doctors involved in the industrial action are only providing emergency care.

Key questions about the dispute are answered here.

Stray FM has spoken to one of the junior doctors on strike in Harrogate:

How Harrogate is affected

Dr David Scullion, Medical Director of Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, explains how the hospital has coped:

How Craven is affected

Stacey Hunter, Director of Operations at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust, said: "We have worked through our contingency plans with our staff, including consultants, nurses, other health professionals and union representatives, to ensure patient safety, care and welfare are maintained during the planned industrial action by junior doctors.

"Whilst we have rearranged a small number of our planned activities, such as non-emergency operations, we have aimed, wherever possible, to avoid cancelling routine appointments and clinics and have kept this to a minimum. Any affected patients have been notified, and if patients have not heard from us, they should attend their appointments as normal."

How Wharfedale is affected

A spokesperson for Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust said: "We are currently working with senior clinical leaders to develop and refine our planning, to ensure all our inpatients, as well as emergency and urgent admissions, are looked after safely and appropriately during any industrial action.

"Emergency and urgent services are planned to continue as normal during the periods of action. However, this action is happening at a time when hospital services are under enormous pressure because of the number of people needing treatment for winter-related problems such as respiratory diseases and infections. As a result, some planned operations and appointments are likely to be postponed.

"Any patients whose appointments will be affected by this action will be contacted in advance and rescheduled as soon as possible. Patients who do not receive contact should attend for their appointment at their scheduled time as planned."

Hospital bosses are urging everyone to make use of other healthcare options wherever possible, such as visiting a GP or pharmacist, calling NHS 111 or using the NHS Choices website www.nhs.uk