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Assurances for Emergency Medicine Doctors

Dear All. 

Many EM trainees will be aware that the college of Emergency Medicine has been involved in giving views on the new contracts from the news letters we recieve.

Can the JD negotiating panel give any assurances that Emergency Medicine Doctors will not face a pay cut from the new contract given the intense nature of work and often antisocial hours.  I personally feel that there needs to be clarification around this topic especially given the crisis in Emergency Medicine recruitment and retention of trainees.

Given the pay envelope will no go up but may be redistributed in new ways could the panel give any information on what its views are regarding pay for EM trainees and other acute specialities where given current levels of staff reducing hours does not appear to be possible?


David Rouse -

LRC JD Elected Officer

1 reply

  • Hi David, thanks for posting this. I am the team's Deputy Negotiator and like you I'm an Emergency Medicine trainee. 

    Unfortunately I'm currently not able to give you the assurances you are looking for as the manner in which our pay will be structured under the new contract has not been discussed in depth. As you know, our current contract significantly skews pay towards out-of-hours working but doesn't recognise variable intensity, which often results in junior doctors working in jobs that may be very different in intensity but similar in reward. Both of these factors will be considered when the negotiations return to this topic later on in the summer.

    As you correctly stated the overall pay envelope is not going to increase, so the new contract will not make junior doctors better off on average. However it is our hope that as well as making junior doctors' pay fairer for all with respect to the above, we can also ensure that actual hours worked are recognised in good time through a system of exception reporting (as stated in the Heads of Terms and currently under discussion in the negotiations) and we can remove the often wide swings in pay that are currently experienced as a result of differential banding.

    One final comment to make - although EM is certainly a speciality in crisis, both sides of the negotiation are clear that a four-nation contract for all juniors is too blunt a tool to solve this or any other recruitment and retention crisis, and must be future-proofed against what hopefully will be a very different situation in years to come. In the meantime, the UK Junior Doctor Committee's Education & Training Sub-Committee is continuing to engage with the College, HEE  and other stakeholders on this issue.

    As always, we are keen to hear views from trainees in all specialities on the subjects of pay, out-of-hours working and intensity, as well as everything else to do with our contracts, both old and new. The negotiation team post updates in Communities following negotiation meetings and always keep an eye out for postings like your own, and we'd like to encourage you to keep doing so!