Doctors in France down stethoscopes

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Paris - Almost three-quarters of France's doctors joined a one- day strike in protest at government reforms of the health and welfare system and cost-control measures they entail, writes Mary Dejevsky.

But their action was trumped by a government decision not only to toughen predicted spending controls on doctors, but also to reorganise the welfare management structures in such a way as to deprive France's major trade unions of much of their real power.