Sussex residents urged to support the local NHS ahead of joint historic industrial action next week

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The NHS in Sussex is calling on the public’s support to help ensure emergency care is available for those in most need as consultants and junior doctors strike together next week.

The British Medical Association (BMA) has announced consultants and junior doctors will take part in joint strike action from 7am, Monday, October 2 to 7am, Thursday, October 5.

The NHS in Sussex will prioritise patient safety during next week’s industrial action, with all health and care partners in Sussex working together to ensure that critical services will continue to be available.

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NHS leaders are very grateful to people for their support during the previous periods of industrial action so far this year, and are calling for the public to continue to support the NHS by taking the following actions:

The NHS in Sussex is calling on the public’s support to help ensure emergency care is available for those in most need as consultants and junior doctors strike together next week. Picture by Scott Barbour/Getty ImagesThe NHS in Sussex is calling on the public’s support to help ensure emergency care is available for those in most need as consultants and junior doctors strike together next week. Picture by Scott Barbour/Getty Images
The NHS in Sussex is calling on the public’s support to help ensure emergency care is available for those in most need as consultants and junior doctors strike together next week. Picture by Scott Barbour/Getty Images

– Choose the most appropriate NHS service for needs and only use 999 and A&E or Emergency Departments for serious or life-threatening emergencies.

Use an alternative NHS service and to use NHS 111 first either online or by phone for anything that isn’t a life-saving emergency.

– Know it may take longer than expected to be seen and treated for those patients who attend emergency departments, but do not have time-critical or life-threatening conditions.

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– Collect family and friends from hospital as soon as they are ready to be discharged.

– Stay away from hospitals if showing the symptoms of flu or Covid (or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive), unless it is an emergency.

– Planned appointments and clinics will be affected by the industrial action; however, people should attend their appointments unless they are contacted directly by the NHS.

Patients do not need to contact their NHS service or team in advance, the team will contact patients directly if an appointment needs to be rescheduled.

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Dr Dinesh Sinha, chief medical officer at NHS Sussex, said: “We are working closely with partners to ensure we prioritise urgent and emergency care for patients during the latest strike days, which are planned for next week.

“We are very grateful to the public for all their help and support over the last months of strike action and do need the public to continue to support us again by using the right health service to meet their needs.

“Anyone who has an urgent care need, that’s not an emergency, can help us throughout the year by using the right service to meet their needs, and to use NHS 111 first either online or by phone.”