Andrew Lansley reopens talks with doctors

 

The Health Secretary has reopened talks with doctors following their industrial action over the Government's controversial pension reforms.

Andrew Lansley was due to meet with the British Medical Association (BMA) chair of council Dr Mark Porter this afternoon.

The meeting comes the day before the BMA's council will meet in Edinburgh to decide whether to take more action.

Last month doctors took industrial action for the first time in almost four decades by boycotting non-urgent care.

Last month, at the BMA's annual conference in Bournemouth, doctors said that more industrial action is "necessary" to voice their concerns over pension reforms.

The representative body also called for Mr Lansley's resignation, saying it had "no confidence" in him.

The BMA announced the first day of action after it accused ministers of pressing ahead with "totally unjustified" increases in pension contributions and a later retirement age for doctors.

The action on June 21 left thousands of patients unable to have a planned operation, see their specialist or GP.

Figures show that a fifth of GP practices were affected. Across the country, 2,703 operations were postponed and 18,717 outpatient appointments rescheduled.

Another day of action could see doctors running a Christmas Day-style skeleton service with only emergency services operating.

PA

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