NHS in Sussex advice and information for patients and the public during NHS doctors industrial action

July 13, 2023

Our colleagues at Sussex Health and Care have asked that we share the following message:

The British Medical Association (BMA), British Dental Association (BDA) and Hospital Consultants and Specialists Association (HCSA) are planning 120 hours of continuous junior doctors’ strike action from 7.00am on Thursday 13 July until 7.00am on Tuesday 18 July.

Then a day later, consultant doctors and dentists will be taking strike action for 48 hours from 7.00am on Thursday 20 July until 7.00am on Saturday 22 July.

During the two days of action, consultants will continue to provide emergency services but routine services will be impacted.

Health and care leaders in Sussex are working together to maintain patient safety, but they are warning that the impact of these strikes will be challenging for local services due to the length of time that they are continuing for.

Emergency and critical care will be prioritised and will continue to be available for those who need it, but with a reduced workforce during the industrial action it is likely that there will be delays for those patients who attend emergency departments but do not have time-critical or life threatening conditions and changes to other services.

NHS leaders are urging the public to support the NHS to help services to manage patient care over the planned strike days.

It is important the public play their part and ‘Help Us Help You’ to ensure people are able to access the care and support they need. Local people are asked to take the following actions:

  • To think very carefully about choosing the most appropriate NHS service for your needs and only use 999 and A&E departments for serious or life-threatening emergencies, such as chest pain, severe bleeding or breathing difficulties. For anything that isn’t a life-saving emergency, to use an alternative NHS service and to use NHS 111 as the first port of call either online or by phone.
  • To know that if you do need support and care, it may take longer than you might expect to be seen and treated, so please be patient and continue to use the most appropriate service for your needs.
  • To please collect family and friends from hospital as soon as they are ready to be discharged, and support the discharge process to available community beds, to allow acute hospital beds to be freed up for those who need them most.
  • To stay away from our hospitals if you have symptoms of flu or Covid or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, unless it is an emergency.

Read the latest advice from the NHS:

People in Sussex urged to make the right choice when they need medical help ahead of the longest NHS strike this year – Sussex Health and Care (ics.nhs.uk)

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