Doctor’s Viral Letter to Jeremy Hunt


Junior Doctor Fights Back Against Health Secretary’s Plans and Goes […]


Junior Doctor Fights Back Against Health Secretary’s Plans and Goes Viral

An incensed letter about the Government’s plans for a 7 day NHS, written by a junior doctor to David Cameron, has gone viral after hundreds of thousands of people shared it around the internet.

After health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, challenged the British Medical Association to negotiate changes to hospital consultants and junior doctors’ working hours or face a 7 day working contract, there has been a huge rally from NHS staff who, despite not being on a 7 day working contract, are working at weekends.

None of the rallying cries has been louder or more well supported than the letter that junior doctor, Janis Burns, sent to David Cameron challenging him to treat a dying patient after working a long series of night shifts.

“You try managing that after you’ve been up all night and then tell me the NHS isn’t 24 hours 7 days a week 365 days a year,”  With nearly 183,000 shares from her original post, and countless news websites reposting the letter in full to read on their own sites, Janis Burns has become a folk hero for her coworkers.

Janis attacked the health secretary for manipulating the public for his own agenda, suggesting doctors do not provide a seven day service by showing him the stint of shifts she, her consultant and several other colleagues had recently completed.

“On Wednesday morning this week I returned to work at 0800. I worked the weekend in Intensive Care as a junior doctor, for your information I was working from 2000 to 0900 on Friday, Saturday and Sunday i.e. I was part of the team that provided a 24 hour, 7 days a week, 365 days a year service.

“My consultant started his weekend of work at 1700 on the Friday. He finished at 0800 on Monday morning. He didn’t go home until well after we had started our night shift and he was in before we went home in the morning.”

Hunt accused doctors of stopping his plan to introduce a 7 day working week as standard across the NHS, claiming that 6,000 people die every year due to a lack of senior staff working weekend shifts.

The letter was posted online after Janis had tried to hand deliver it to 10 Downing Street, she believes that the Government are putting the NHS at risk by acting so irresponsibly and many agree.

Thousands of doctors and consultants have joined in with the hashtag #ImInWorkJeremy posting selfies of themselves working the Sunday shift and asking what the health secretary is doing with his weekend.

Janis Burns works in the Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Trust as a junior doctor in an intensive care unit.

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