Junior doctors take to picket line in South Shields

The junior doctors' picket line at South Tyneside District Hospital.
The junior doctors' picket line at South Tyneside District Hospital.

Junior doctors took to the picket line outside South Tyneside District Hospital to fight Government proposals.

The medics were striking as part of an ongoing row over the plans to bring in new contracts.

About 15 people joined the picket line at the South Shields hospital yesterday – and say they were pleased with the level of support they got from the public.

Rebecca Mazel, a foundation doctor at the Harton Lane hospital and British Medical Association representative, said: “It was a really positive response.

“We spoke to the people walking in and out of the hospital and we had a lot of support from people beeping their car horns as they drove past.

“What we are doing is sending a message that we don’t think it is acceptable.

“We don’t want to be put in a position where we are not providing the highest levels of care.”

Ian Frame, South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust’s executive director of personnel and development, said: “As with the previous industrial action as part of this national dispute, we put plans in place to minimise disruption to services at South Tyneside District Hospital whilst protecting the safety and welfare of our patients, which is always our main priority.

“Unfortunately, we had to cancel some outpatient clinics and would like to thank patients and their families and carers for their understanding.”