#ImInWorkJeremy: Doctors send Jeremy Hunt photos of themselves working over the weekend

The Health Secretary is embroiled in a row with the BMA after claiming that 6,000 people die every year because of 'Monday to Friday' NHS

Lizzie Dearden
Saturday 18 July 2015 12:58 BST
Doctors, nurses, GPs, paramedics and medical workers across the country shared  photos. Photo: Reena Aggarwal
Doctors, nurses, GPs, paramedics and medical workers across the country shared photos. Photo: Reena Aggarwal

Doctors, nurses and hospital workers across the country are sending photos of themselves to Jeremy Hunt to prove they work over the weekend as he pushes for seven-day services.

The Health Secretary claimed a “Monday to Friday” culture existed parts of the NHS in a speech on Thursday that fuelled an ongoing row with the British Medical Association (BMA).

In the wake of his comments, enraged medical staff have been sharing pictures of themselves at work with the hashtag #ImInWorkJeremy.

The hashtag was trending on Twitter in the UK on Saturday morning, having been used more than 17,000 times.

It drew huge support from the public, with some praising medical staff as "heroes" and highlighting Mr Hunt's Parliamentary holiday time.

"Apologies, but Jeremy Hunt is out of office so won't be able to read your #ImInWorkJeremy tweets," one commenter joked. "He'll be back on Monday at 11am. Ish."

But some people argued that if doctors were working, they should not be using Twitter, while others defended the Health Secretary’s comments.

Jeremy Hunt claimed people were dying because of a 'Monday to Friday' culture in the NHS

Outlining his plans for NHS reform, Mr Hunt claimed 6,000 people die every year because of the lack of a “proper seven day service” in some areas.

He has given the BMA six weeks to negotiate changes to working contracts for hospital consultants and junior doctors and threatened to force the extra hours if they do not comply.

Dr Mark Porter, chair of the BMA council, said doctors support weekend hospital services and have repeatedly called on the government to give concrete proposals on how they will fund and staff them.

“This is a blatant attempt by the Government to distract from its refusal to invest properly in emergency care,” he added.

Current consultant contracts allow senior doctors to opt out of weekend work while on call as long as it is not an emergency.

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