Operations and appointments cancelled as doctors take industrial action

PATIENTS’ operations and appointments have been cancelled across 1066 Country today as doctors staged a day of strike action.

So far around 28 operations across both the Conquest Hospital and its sister site, Eastbourne DGH, had to be cancelled, as well as around 145 outpatient appointments.

The British Medical Association (BMA) called the strike in protest at the Government pushing through changes to doctors’ pensions who see them as unfair and unnecessary.

The plans would see a new career average pension scheme for all doctors, increases to contribution levels, with some doctors having to pay 14.5 per cent of their salary by 2014, and an increase in the normal retirement age to 68.

A spokesman for NHS Sussex said 13 of the GP practices were involved in the industrial action but none were closed outright.

A spokesman for East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs the Conquest Hospital and Eastbourne DGH, said a few doctors took part in today’s action but all patients needing emergency treatment were still seen.

He said operations that had to be postponed were non-emergency ones.