East Londonderry MLA Claire Sugden has expressed support for the campaign against changes to the Junior Doctor Contract in Northern Ireland.
MLA Sugden said: I fully support the campaign against changes to the Junior Doctor Contract in Northern Ireland.
Proposed changes will cut the number of payments made for unsociable hours, and make Saturdays and late evenings part of a normal working week.
These changes are unacceptable. They show lack of appreciation for our incredibly hard working Junior Doctors, who are already swamped by a Health Service which is operating at capacity.
Many care for patients above and beyond the hours they are required to work. Changes to the contract across the UK do not take into consideration different geographical contexts.
Wales and Scotland have already rejected these changes; I urge the Northern Ireland government to do the same. I have spoken with Junior Doctors and students who are involved with this campaign, and I am lobbying the Minister on their behalf.
This is not the way to solve the problems we have within the Health Service in Northern Ireland. What we need is a clear forward thinking strategic framework. It is the responsibility of the Executive to work with those within the Health Service to lead on this. The sooner they see past their political games, to the real needs of the people, the better.