December 14, 2023
Getting the help you need during the doctors’ strike
Junior doctors will strike from 20 December 2023 until 23 December 2023 and from 3 January 2024 until 9 January 2024.
Junior doctors are fully trained doctors with up to eight years of experience – they account for around 50% of doctors working in the NHS. This means that NHS services will be under a huge amount of pressure leading up to, and during the strike. Hospitals will be doing everything they can to keep disruption to a minimum and ensure the safety of patients.
NHS teams across Wakefield continue to work hard to minimise disruption from the industrial action but it is expected that there will be a significant impact on local health services.
Some hospital appointments and planned treatment may need to be rearranged. Healthcare teams will contact people as soon as possible if your appointment needs to be changed. If you do not hear from your healthcare team your appointment will be going ahead as planned.
Regardless of any strike action taking place, it is important that people who need urgent medical care continue to come forward, especially in emergency and life-threatening cases – when someone is seriously ill or injured, or their life is at risk.
NHS 111: If you need medical help or advice, or you are unsure about whether you should go to hospital, go to NHS 111 online unless it is a life-threatening emergency when you should still call 999.
People should only call 999 if it is a medical or mental health emergency (when someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk). They should take advice from 111 / 999 call-handlers on whether there are circumstances where it is suitable for them to make their own way to hospital.
During strike days, it is likely 999 call handlers will be very busy. NHS 111 call centres will have fewer staff, with longer call response times expected across the system. As a result, we are urging anyone with non-urgent care need to first seek help from NHS 111 online.
A range of local services will continue to be available to meet your healthcare needs during the industrial action, including GP practices and community pharmacies, though these services may also be impacted by strike action.
Your GP: The majority of practices in West Yorkshire will remain open during the strike, though many will be under increased pressure. Do continue to attend your GP and dental appointments unless you have been contacted and told otherwise.
Your local pharmacy: Pharmacists are trained health professionals who can help with your medication questions and minor health concerns such as headaches, sore throats and aches and pains. Many offer private consultations without an appointment, and can advise where to get further help if you need it.
If you’re worried about your child’s health, you can find online healthcare advice recommended by local healthcare professionals at wyhealthiertogether.nhs.uk
The NHS is also asking the public to play their part by taking simple steps during industrial action to look after themselves, loved ones and checking in on vulnerable family members and neighbours.
More information about a range of local services, including mental health support can be found on this website.