GPs must not let their anger at the government cloud their focus from trying to find a resolution to the NHS pension row, the Chair of the British Medical Association (BMA) Council has warned.
Addressing over 500 doctors at the BMA Annual Representatives Meeting in Bournemouth today (25 June) Dr Hamish Meldrum, blasted the government for “betraying the trust” of doctors in overhauling the 2008 NHS pension reform.
He said he was “deeply saddened” that doctors felt forced to take industrial action last week (21 June) but said the action demonstrated a “powerful and unified voice” on the part of doctors.
Dr Meldrum, however, rejected the view that further industrial action was the way forward.
“We do not seek conflict, we want to get back to the negotiating table with the other health unions,” he said.
“Last week we demonstrated a powerful and unified voice but nobody should be rushing to repeat or escalate the action.
“However angry we may be, we must not lose the trust of the public and we must not let anger prevent us from seeking a solution.”
In what was his final speech as Chair of the BMA Council, Dr Meldrum warned the longer it takes to find a resolution to the pension row, the more damaged the doctor-patient relationship will be.
Dr Meldrum’s successor will be announced on Thursday 28 June.