BMA signs Armed Forces Covenant, reaffirming commitment to Armed Forces members

by BMA media team

Press release from the BMA

Location: UK
Last reviewed: 11 April 2022
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The BMA has today signed the Armed Forces Covenant, underlining its commitment to its members who serve or have served in the military, as well as wider Armed Forces personnel.

As the trade union for doctors and medical students, the BMA represents doctors in the Army, Navy and Air Force, and has a dedicated Armed Forces Committee (AFC) for both serving and civilian members.

The Covenant – which is a pledge to treat armed forces personnel with fairness and respect – was signed by BMA chief executive Tom Grinyer at BMA House in London, witnessed by the Major General Tim Hodgetts, who is Surgeon General of the Defence Medical Services.

BMA AFC deputy chair Dr Grant Dex, who is a civilian GP in the Defence Medical Services, and AFC member Major Toby Pring, a surgical trainee and Army reservist, also attended the signing.

BMA chief executive Tom Grinyer said:

“The BMA is proud to represent doctors who serve in the British Armed Forces, providing vital care to Armed Forces personnel and their families both at home and overseas.

“By signing the Covenant today we are reaffirming our strong commitment to effectively represent, support and advocate on behalf of these most valued members as well as the wider Armed Forces community.”

BMA AFC chair Lt Col Mark Weir said:

“The BMA has long recognised the contributions its members in uniform make to the country, and we are delighted to see this formalised in the signing of the Armed Forces Covenant.

“This public show of commitment to military regulars and reserves will be very welcome. We hope it demonstrates to medical officers across the UK and abroad that the BMA represents them and their interests, whether we are making the case for their pay to be risen, addressing issues to their pension, or supporting Armed Forces doctors in the challenges they face in the course of their duties.”

Surgeon General Major General Tim Hodgetts said:

“The BMA’s pledge through signing the Armed Forces Covenant today, builds on the long-standing relationship between BMA and the Defence Medical Services that supports our medical professionals who serve as both regulars and reservists.

“It recognises the contribution of our medical workforce, their unique circumstances and their challenges in providing care for all service personnel when deployed or in the home base. It does this through-career, from military medical student to expert primary or secondary care medical practitioner.

“We, the Defence Medical Services, are grateful to receive this commitment and look forward to working with BMA to strive to sustain the employment conditions that optimally support the recruitment and retention of our Armed Forces medical personnel.”

Ends

Notes to editors

The BMA is a professional association and trade union representing and negotiating on behalf of all doctors in the UK. A leading voice advocating for outstanding health care and a healthy population. An association providing members with excellent individual services and support throughout their lives.

  • Pictures of the signing are available here and here. In the first image (interior), L-R are: BMA Armed Forces Committee deputy chair Dr Grant Dex, Surgeon General Major General Tim Hodgetts, BMA chief executive Tom Grinyer and BMA AFC member Major Toby Pring.