This is a thorny issue, and I am not writing to argue my corner. However, I have been quite challenged by how some of the information has been presented in the press. I know that the newspaper headlines don’t represent the general public, but like many I have been saddened by the ongoing debate.
I was therefore massively encouraged to see members of the public handing out badges, flyers and information outside my placement hospital. They were not there to argue about the issue, but to provide information to fully inform the public of the facts and to show their doctors that they are valued.
I’m not sure how you feel about the debate, what you’ve heard about junior doctors and what you think of the NHS. We have the best healthcare system in the world (as decided in 2014 by the commonwealth fund) and much of this service is provided by junior doctors (a doctor in training- up to 17 yrs after graduating). Whatever you think about a 7-day NHS, the amount they are paid or the hours they work, doctors work hard and face many difficult situations every day: maybe we should give them a bit of slack, and even a smile or a thank you, next time we visit?
It might also be sensible to read up on all the facts around the debate before launching into a discussion about it. After all, who do you trust most: a doctor or a politician?