The new junior doctors leader has pledged to continue the fight for trainees’ rights under the new contract, following his election last week.
Jeeves Wijesuriya, a specialty trainee 2 in general practice at the Homerton Hospital, London, made the pledge after his election as chair of the BMA junior doctors committee.
The Government began introducing the new employment contract for trainees in October, despite medical students and trainees in England rejecting it in a ballot in July.
Dr Wijesuriya said: ‘I realised I am taking on this role at a difficult time for junior doctors. While we remain opposed to the imposition of the 2016 contract, we must also remain united in our efforts to protect the rights of doctors now working under it.’
There was ‘a great deal of work we need to do to rebuild your faith in the BMA to represent and fight for you,’ he added. ‘I appreciate that this will be challenging, but I know that the JDC and its executive committee is committed to working hard to deliver on this.’
The JDC heard last week that some progress had been made on a range of concerns, raised by members about the contract.
Reassurances on pay protection have been secured for trainees who are working less than full time who were worried about breaks in their training due to rotations being out of sync. The BMA has also secured a commitment to pay parity from university employers for academic trainees.
Dr Wijesuriya thanked Pete Campbell, the outgoing co-chair of the JDC, with whom he had previously shared the role for his work and support.
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